Why I love being an empty nester

YOU know what I love about being an empty nester? Everything.

There's something immensely satisfying about watching your grown children make their way in life, after you've spent a couple of decades teaching them everything (hopefully) that they need to know.

It's nice to be able to sit back and let them make their own decisions.

There's a bit less worrying

involved, even though when they phone and say things like, "I fainted at work today", the mummy instincts still tend to go into overdrive.

It's exciting to see what they do, who they spend time with, what jobs they choose, what study they undertake, the paths they choose.

And I get to learn from them as they broaden their horizons.

Just last week, during a quick overnight visit, my first-born son showed me how to fold a fitted sheet so it stayed flat.

Who knew such a thing was possible? (YouTube - is there anything it can't do?)

And meanwhile, back at home, it's just me, which is kinda cool.

I spend less time cooking and cleaning. I can tidy and the house stays tidy.

I generally only have to do a load of washing once a week.

I can make a smoothie for dinner, or have a packet of chips, and it's okay.

I get to choose what to watch on TV, always. I don't have to drive anyone around.

No school uniforms to iron or lunchboxes to pack.

I'm saving money (okay, I'm not, but I could if I stopped spending it on fun stuff).

And now, after years of making decisions based around other people, it's all about me.

I'm looking forward to the years ahead, which I will fill with travel and new experiences.

After that, I'll settle back in and become one of those people who are obsessed with their pets.

And after that, perhaps I'll be a grumpy old lady who says whatever she thinks - bliss.

Apparently there's a thing called empty-nest syndrome, where people experience grief when their adult child moves out of home.

I don't get it. What's not to love?

I love my kids. I love spending time with them. I adore it when they come home, or when I go to visit them.

But they're off doing what they're supposed to do.

The time we spend raising kids is finite. We know this from day one.

Reaching the end of that stage of life is something to be celebrated.

We made it. And now there are plenty of other things to be going on with.

Topics:  family life lifestyle opinion parenting

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