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What Should You Do When You Feel Unhappy? Consider Starting a Daily Practice

June 23rd, 2014

What Should You Do When You Feel Unhappy? Consider Starting a Daily Practice  By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Associate for Life in Transition  The book “A Return to Love: Reflections on the Principles of A Course in Miracles,” by Marianne Williamson suggests that we daily ask, Where would you have me go? What would you have me do? What would you have me say and to whom? Whether you are preparing for a change (empty nest, divorce, career, illness, loss) or just suddenly find yourself sitting “in the midst of it,” people always ask what helps me. Sometimes weeping or... Read More

Celebrate Love This February. Specifically, Choose to Focus on What You Love About Yourself

January 24th, 2014

Celebrate Love This February. Specifically, Choose to Focus on What You Love About Yourself By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert Focus is important. I enjoy choosing a focus for each month. With February around the corner, it is natural to choose to focus on love. It\’s always a great focus. But for today, let\’s not focus on ludus, or eros, which are the Greek terms for romantic and sexual love. And let\’s not talk about agape, either. That\’s the Greek term for family love. Instead, let\’s focus on self-love. But before you start thinking I\’m... Read More

Thanksgiving

November 19th, 2012

Thanksgiving By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert The friend is the man who knows all about you, and still likes you. Elbert Hubbard Memories rise up. People we have spent time with and those we no longer can see, come visiting in our minds and hearts. Memories are a good thing. We fear the tears, the loneliness, and we long for connections. What I appreciate about the human spirit is we get to begin, again. We get to be brave and make up new traditions, break some rules, and allow who we are today to simply be happy. Some people have communities and others don\’t.... Read More

Change It Up

October 24th, 2012

Change It Up By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert When I was in Boston last week, I tried something new. While walking, and this sounds silly I know, I would stop and look up. People in windows, staircases, cranes, flashing tall lights, birds and squirrels, shoes, the moon, stars, planes, lanterns, animals in the clouds. When I have the fun of taking photos, I photograph a different perspective rather than only what is right in front of me with the object. In my morning support group of transitions, we made a list of what we are going to do differently this week: 1. Not start... Read More

Why Don\’t More Parents Talk About Empty Nest?

September 21st, 2012

Why Don\’t More Parents Talk About Empty Nest? By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert This weekend kids are packing up and heading to college. Parents are shocked at the gut pain they are feeling, hugging goodbye. The “ugly cry” visits them at unpredictable times, like while marketing. Goodbye drops them into the reality that their parenting role will never be as it was before. They are kicked out of the kingdom with an unfamiliar role as parents. Parents are in the background, not leading, not seeing day to day, and not hearing the stories after school. It is... Read More

Saying Goodbye to Your College Bound Kids

September 15th, 2012

Saying Goodbye to Your College Bound Kids By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert In our parent group, I suggested each share what they will miss and what they look forward to when they aren\’t parents every day. I suggested they remember to allow different parts of them to speak, the confident one, the brave one, the sad one, the freedom one, etc. We forget we have so many parts within us when sadness grips. Tears are a great thing even though I have never met one person who likes to cry unless they are alone. Even alone, the beginning of tears feels the worst because you... Read More

Father\’s Day

June 18th, 2012

Father\’s Day By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert None of these photos are my dad. They are my dad\’s imaginary best friends. I loved seeing him, just home from a match, club bag on arm and clicking sounding shoes, coming across the floor. Not his profession, his weekend obsession. If he wasn\’t in a game, as he grew frail, he and I would curl up, TV on high volume, cheering about something that I never did figure out, except when the white ball rolled on the green and into that circle. He wasn\’t into teaching. The match was his relaxation time.... Read More

Have You Had To Speak Up In A Difficult Situation?

June 4th, 2012

Have You Had To Speak Up In A Difficult Situation? By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert Did you speak up or let it be? A woman I worked with didn\’t think it was ok for her to share with her kids that she wanted what she wanted, which was to make her own choices about whether to travel or stay home. She used the words, wanted what she wanted because that was the unspoken truth. It is her choice and she forgot that thought. Yes, she heard all the reasons why she needed to go on a trip to “get out there” and yet she didn\’t think it was ok for them to... Read More

Leaving Behind What Was

April 18th, 2012

Leaving Behind What Was By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert A teacher shared with me years ago, “Confusion is great.” I frowned because that made no sense. Now it does. Confusion takes you out of routine and what you believe to be true. It is a choice to bring up courage and trust. You have heard me say it before, TRUST IS EARNED. You lose trust in yourself and others. Trust is not a given. You have more to lose than gain in the process of trusting because you can get hurt. Hurt is not the end. When you trust someone with private information and they tell... Read More

Silence Your Inner Critic . . . One Day at a Time

March 17th, 2012

Silence Your Inner Critic . . . One Day at a Time By Natalie Caine, M.A. NABBW’s Empty Nest Expert You\’re bored. You get in your car. You\’re not sure where you want to go. You go to the same old places and do the same old things. You say to yourself, “nothing ever changes”. Recently, I asked some of my group members where they go and what they do to have a better day. Their responses included these places and activities: 1. Shopping for bargains 2. Looking at new cars 3. Visiting a garden shop 4. Walking on the beach 5. Adopting a pet 6. Going to a bookstore 7.... Read More