I’m an empty-nester again, and I’m a little bummed about it. My 25-year-old son, who’s been living at home for the past 18 months, moved to Baltimore this week.
He’s fortunate that the company he’s worked for this past year is giving him the opportunity to advance. The bad news is that he moved 1,000 miles away from me.
Having an adult child at home doesn’t have to be a bad experience. We got along very well. I had someone to change light bulbs and kitty litter and to lift heavy things and open jars. In return, he had someone to get all up in his business and remind him of things he needed to do.
We Netflixed the “Breaking Bad” series and more recently “House of Cards.” We watched on his X-Box so he could hold the controls. If there was a hint of a sexual scene coming up, he hit the fast-forward button. No way we were going to sit in the same room and watch that.
I’ve had kids move out before. Kathy, the first, was barely 18 when I drove her to college. I cried the entire 120 miles home. In due time, Linda moved into an apartment 1/2 block away. After a year in a commuter college, Steve left in his little Subaru for Wenatchee, WA to work the apple harvest for his uncle. That summer, for the first time, I was truly an empty-nester.
Then, with life changes that came along bringing re-marriage and step-children to parent and finally Phillip’s adoption when we were in our 50’s … I haven’t had many chances to get good at this empty-nesting thing. I have found that no matter how old they were, regardless of where they were re-locating, or how crazy they were making me at the time, I always cried a little when one left.
That piece of my parenting job is over. Dear Lord, I hope I did it right.