We live in a society that relies heavily on titles. Back in the day (and without showing my true age), these titles were simple. Just to name a few: Working class, middle class, politicians, business men and women, and Jedi.
The Jedi Order mostly consists of polymaths: teachers, philosophers, scientists, engineers, physicians, diplomats and warriors… By serving others, the Jedi give of themselves through acts of charity, citizenship, and volunteerism. (Yes, I copied and pasted straight from Wikipedia) Don’t correct me if I’m wrong, but that sounds a lot like my job description back when I answered “Homemaker” for employment on a credit application.
I didn’t build houses, I made a house a home, but surely you can see how the two might get misunderstood. So, I was kind of grateful when “Stay-at-home Mom” became my title. Though not very glamourous, and bordering on sounding lazy, once again, this title didn’t quite fit either. I never just stayed at home. Enter the sub titles: Soccer Mom, Class Mom, PTA Mom, Volunteer Mom, Sit In The Pick-up Line An Hour Before The School Day Ends And Poke My Eyes Out Mom. The list goes on. Let’s just say I was a Jedi. And though it was, at times, chaotic, challenging, scary, and exhausting, I wouldn’t give one minute back.
Now, my children are teaching me what it is like to be a twenty-something in the year 2017. It’s a very different time and I have had to learn a new language. Apparently, “hook up with you later,” does not mean you will be meeting your friend at say, the gym, or the grocery store. Also, “Netflix and chill” is not something you do when no one else is home so you think it’s okay to take the whole pint of ice cream from the freezer and watch a movie that has the greatest title and strangest synopsis in the hopes that, in the end, you will find some sort of meaning in your life.
And that’s not all. When texting a member of the opposite sex that you may have a bit of a crush on, it is imperative that the correct emoji be used to alert this person to the fact that you are not flirting but merely blushing at his/her cuteness when, in fact, you are flirting! I will be honest here, if I had to dissect every text back when I was dating, I never would have found a mate. “Is he yelling at me? Or is he just excited that I want to hook-up at the gym later?”
And there is much more to learn. When my son needed to borrow a drill, it gave a whole new meaning to “school projects” when I found myself helping with the finishing touches on a kegerator.
For the most part, my job is done, as I consider myself a Semi-Retired Stay-at-home Mom. Thankfully, my daughter has eased me into this new phase of my life by living at home while pursuing a degree in teaching. My son, however, did not. ($$$)
Did I do everything right? Probably not. Would I go back and change a few choices I made? Most definitely. But I did the best I could with the ever- changing world to keep my family happy, healthy, and safe.
Which brings me back around to the heart of this blog. (Bet you thought I forgot.) For the last time, my title is going to change, and “Empty Nester” is looming overhead like a giant storm cloud sagging beneath the weight of what the hell does that mean?
containing nothing; not filled or occupied:
synonyms: unfilled, bare, blank, vacant, hollow
structure or place made or chosen by a bird for laying eggs and sheltering its young
synonyms: shell, case, bubble, layer, coat
There are so many things wrong here, I don’t know where to begin. So, I will point out the obvious. I am not a bird and I do not live in a nest. I live in a house that I call home.
My children are not birds, and though their life began with an egg, I grew them inside of me. (I will not give you a lesson in reproduction) The day my children were born was their first step towards an independent life. As for me, I have been letting go ever since.
Today, I am a mother, a wife, a sister, a daughter, a friend, a writer, a crafter, a gardener, an exercise enthusiast (nah, just kidding), and a Jedi (not kidding). I will see to it my life is filled with laughter, love, and friendships that will take me to the bittersweet end. I will never have an empty nest, I leave that for the birds. Besides, if my kids don’t want me, I will sit on their front porch until they let me in!
Until next time, my friends, when I may have a completely different view of life, make the most of today.
Loved your post. The kids may be out in the big world, but the home for them to return to always remains.