A THOUGHT OF CONFIDENCE “I think that you find your own way. You have your own rules. You have your own understanding of yourself, and that\’s what you\’re going to count on. In the end, it\’s what feels right to you. Not what your mother told you. Not what some actress told you. Not what anybody else told you but the still, small voice”.
~ Meryl Streep
It is getting real and still not that you won\’t be hearing the sound of your children every day. Get support and make a plan.
Lower your expectations that you will have as much time with them this summer as you would like to have. They are dealing with the lasts and goodbyes, as well. You want what you want and I for sure know that feeling since you are the parents who have been there and will be there always. Flexible and saying what you need with the icing of letting it go.
Let them know you are happy and excited for them and what you love about them in casual conversations not sit down chats unless you are lucky to have them open to that moment. You can always write a letter and put it in their suitcase.
Plan fun for you this summer and for when you come back home. Simple things like a video, food made ahead in the freezer, music, dinner out with a friend, getting into nature, making photo albums, event to attend that you have been interested in, having people over keeping it simple and small. You will come up with ideas once you start to write possibilities for summer and back home after the drop off.
You get to feel whatever and whenever feelings arise. There are no rules and no critics to stop you from being what you are in the moment.
Delete the need to compare yourself to others.
Get support whether on line or with a friend. You need to talk and be heard without should and rules and solutions
Make a list of what might be hiding inside that would be fun to try now that you have more free time. Small ideas and big ones.
Get feedback from people who know you as far as interests for you that aren\’t necessarily productive but fulfilling.
Allow yourself time to do nothing and to say NO thank you.
Go someone where and let it be ok to leave. You get to change your mind
Empty nesters have shared with me that they have reconnected with family members they didn\’t have time to hang out with.
Celebrate all you have done and given to your children. Remind yourself you will be focusing back on yourself and it takes time to transition.
Simply be yourself all summer. Be good to yourself. Be patient.
Change is inevitable. Get ready. Get support.
Visit my blog for more tips and stories www.emptynestsupport.com. Email firstname.lastname@example.org if you are interested in a Journaling class online with empty nesters.
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Natalie has been featured in NY TIMES, LA TIMES, BETTER HOMES AND GARDENS, LIFETIME RADIO FOR WOMEN, USA TODAY.
Natalie Caine is the founder of Empty Nest Support Services. When her daughter was a senior in high school, she realized that as a soon-to-be “empty nester,” she would be undergoing a major life shift. Not wanting to confront this transition alone nor have her many friends face this abyss without strong support, she created a support services group, which quickly grew into a new career and an exciting full-time business.