In September, my daughter, my youngest child, will go off to University. She is both nervous and excited. I know that she will have a great time; that she will make new friends, meet new people, learn new things, be exposed to new ideas and beliefs. I am excited for her and I tell her this with a reassuring tone.
In September, for the first time in 29 years, I will be living on my own at least half of the time. Both my kids will off at school and my husband will be away on work trips for 2 weeks at a time more than half of the time. Even the dog is gone now. It will be just me and the cat in this big house most of the time.
I am working from home these days so it is possible that I could go through whole weeks without seeing anyone else. This is a terrifying thought.
I know that it is a time of opportunities as well; that I will have uncommitted time to dedicate to exercise, art classes, volunteer activities, writing; activities for which there has been little time or energy over the last 22 years of parenting. But that also feels scarey.
So, I need to talk to myself in a reassuring tone; the same way that I talk to my daughter. “Yes Kim, this is a scarey time but it is also an exciting time; a time to make new friends, meet new people, learn new things, and be exposed to new ideas and beliefs. SO, jump in with both feet and have fun!!”
Great talk to yourself Kim, and spot on too.. Think of this time on your own as your creative time.. So after you have got your work done you do from home, Think of ways to venture out or chill out.. I just love solitude and I am quite at home in my own company in my own little world.. I just can not get enough Me time LOL..
I am sure your daughter will be fine, but I know as a parent we still worry, I was the same when my daughter moved out to go live in a small rented cottage by herself.. Learning to let them go is hard.. But learning to enjoy our freedom too is important…
Lovely photos too Kim .. Hugs to you
Thank you Sue….It is good to hear from others who have survived the transition, and are enjoying life on the other side. I will hang on to that on my lonely nights!! Kim
No one “knows” the future. It is a little scary and exciting for everyone. No matter one’s position or age or activity we all suffer from the “unknown” in life. What will happen next depends on you. It really comes down to answering a simple question. “What do you want”?
best of days to you, Eddie
Thanks Eddie…so true!! I will try to get clear about that…Kim
Kim – Change is always scary and exciting. I think the more trepidation you have going into it the more exhilarating it can be as you lean into it. Just remember to have lots of compassion for yourself and be mindful to any “old tapes” that try to play in your head and engage fear. Much love and hugs to you Kim as you walk through another exciting doorway in your life. Marsia
Marsia…thank you for these kind words of advice and encouragement…I like what you are saying about the level of exhilaration matching the level of trepidation. I will hang on to that! Kim
Hi Kim, Your story reminds me of when I was very pregnant with my first child and I began to feel, “Oh, my God! I can’t do this! How will he get out?” The thing that really helped me was, “Millions of mothers have done this before me. I can do this, too.” It’s the same when they grow up (dang them for doing so!). Just another step. I don’t know if I will ever stop missing them, though. And my daughter just moved back in, so I’ll be redoing my full letting go. :)
I do know from having spent almost all of my time alone for the last fifteen years that quiet can be restorative, but it is lonely, too. Looking within is unavoidable and I’m appreciative of the process because I want to know the answers to important questions. I want to be one with the Whole. Just like when we raised our children, there’s no manual, though. And I suppose the journey wouldn’t be so exciting if there was. You get to create your personal world now in a way not possible before. And you get to do so at a relatively young age; you may find all new ways of being. It is scary, but wow, what an adventure! And you ARE up to it. :)
Thanks Pam….it is scarey but we don’t talk about these things much in our society. But you are right; millions of women around the world have survived it and I will too! I remember living alone before kids and Dan and finding it peaceful. I did a lot of creative projects then…and started to explore spirituality…and forced myself to get to make new friends. It was lonely at times but that forced me out of my comfort zone. And so it will be this time. I feel like I am starting all over again!! With Love…Kim
Absolutely! I had this alone time thrust on me a couple of years back when my ex was ready to share in the parenting of our boys. Those weeks alone were at first terrifying, but now I love them. There is space for you now to pursue those interests about which you are most passionate.
Sally…I can imagine that was a terrifying time…and lonely. It is reassuring to hear that you enjoy that time alone now! I will hang on to that!!
We went through this when My daughter joined the university 2 years back… she surely will find her way..and This separation will surely bring you closer than you are now…This is the time you will have to Just BE and do things which you always wanted to do..
all the very best
Thank you Sriram….that is encouraging to hear from someone who has already been through it. Kim