Monday, May 28, 2012

Daughters and Friends

How do parents find a balance between being so incredibly happy for their children who move away for a wonderful job and the emptiness that is caused by that move?

Now that both of my daughters have moved out of my house I am officially an Empty Nester .  Wow, does that sound strange!

The youngest moved a few years back.  She lives close enough that we can have lunch together.  We phone, email and text to keep in touch and share as many Sunday dinners are our schedules allow.  I am glad that we remain close, but I was an emotional mess when she first moved out.  She is my baby and I just wasn't ready to let her go.  Even if it was just across town!  It was just so foreign to not see her every day. 

Now my oldest, freshly graduated from college, has been offered an internship in another state.  A state not so close.  The job offer I am sure will follow this internship will not bring her closer to home. 

When my younger daughter moved out I worried that there was so much I had not taught her.  Was she really ready to be out on her own?  Whenever we were together I would ask her to call when she got home so I would know she was safe.  Sensible from my point of view; worry wart from hers. 

Now her sister has moved out.  I still worry about her being safe, but maybe not quite as much because she is older.  Probably because I am older.  I am still learning to focus on the good and positive in my life than worry about what might happen.

I thought this move out would be easier.  Not because I feel any less for my oldest, but because I had done this before.  I found things and people to help fill the hole.  I spent more time with my husband, my friends and projects that always seemed to get shifted to the back burner.

Boy, was I wrong!  Having a child leave your home once does not prepare you for another one to leave.  In some ways this one leaving was harder. 

I say this because I have come to a time when I count both of my daughters as friends.  I was one of those parents who refused to be my children's friend while they were growing up.  (Insert wise old saying about children needing parents, not another friend.).  We cook together, shop together, go to the occasional movie together and sometimes just hang out.  I love this new facet of our relationships. 

I think it is because we are friends that I am struggling more this time.  Don't we all grieve when a friend moves far away?  The routine of our lives becomes interrupted.  A commercial for a new movie makes me think I will have to ask her if she wants to go with me.  I see the cheese she especially likes in the fridge and think I will have to remind her to use it while it is still fresh.  Then I remember she doesn't live here anymore. 

So back to my original question.  "How do parents find a balance between being so incredibly happy for their children who move away for a wonderful job and the emptiness that is caused by that move?"

I know what I will do.  I will spend more time with my husband and my friends.  I will spend more time with my younger daughter while trying to not smother her and instead enjoy this new adult relationship.  And I will phone, email, text and even snail mail to my oldest daughter.  I will be incredibly happy for this new adventure she is on and I will miss my friend.

The Hopeful Romantic

Saturday, May 26, 2012

11 years ago

My wedding shoes!
11 years ago today I put on a beautiful wedding gown, some fun red shoes and walked down the aisle to my beloved.  I remember I was so excited to see him!  All I really wanted to do at that moment was give him a big hug, grab his hand and walk out of the chapel.  So much hoopla leading up to the event and I was just ready to be married.  The moment passed and we proceeded with the ceremony. 

As in most marriages, there have been good and bad times.  Neither of us were youngsters and maybe a bit set in our ways.  There was a learning curve to be sure!  I had been married before and was nervous to not repeat whatever had added to the end of that union.  He was a life long bachelor.  Need I say more? 

The best thing I can say about our marriage is that we have fun.  We laugh...a lot!  Mostly at ourselves and each other.  We seem to find humor is the most mundane of things.  I love that I go around with a somewhat silly grin on my face when he is near.

We went out to eat tonight to celebrate these past 11 years.  Our server at the restaurant politely asked if we had plans for this holiday weekend.  I told him, "Just spending time with each other."  Yup, sounds like a plan to me.  I am prepared to go back to work on Tuesday with sore smile muscles from that silly grin.  That sounds like a plan, too!

The Hopeful Romantic

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

An Ode To Tuesdays

Friday has got to be one of the best loved days of the week.  After all, TGIF!  No celebrating Monday.  Enough said about that!

Personally, even though Fridays are good Tuesday gets a nod from me.  This has nothing to do with the calendar.  It is only one day after Monday, but it is just two days before Thursday which is one of my days off.  The office I work in is closed most Thursdays, so you can see why I like Thursdays!  Still doesn't explain the Tuesday connection though.  Tuesdays are short days at our office.  We close early and those who want to stay to catch up do.  Those are pretty good reasons to like Tuesday, but the best reason is lunch with Chris! 

Chris and I work together.  The mood is never heavy when we are together.  We laugh, joke, sign (mostly me) finish each others lines and generally just have a darn good time together!  She is the reason I love Tuesdays.  We go out to lunch on Tuesdays and the food is just a backdrop.  We catch up on each others lives, share office stories, purge about husbands, children, jobs, etc.  And we laugh! 

We decided a long time ago we are kindred souls.  Our histories are very similar, but more than anything I think it is our outlook that drew us together.  Our glasses are neither half full or half empty...they are just too small to hold everything without spilling over. 

We do see each other away from the office, but she is my sanity while I am there and part of the reason I look forward to going to work.  It is a quieter place when one of us is gone.  Once I was relating something to my boss that had happened earlier that day.  I asked, "Didn't you hear Chris and I laughing?"  He said, "You are always laughing!"  Yup, sounds like us! 

The Hopeful Romantic