Empty nesting takes on a whole new twist.
While many people are dealing with the traditional ritual of kids graduating and scurrying off onto their paths of adulting, there's a legion of an entirely different type of empty nesters, and its numbers are growing exponentially.
This group is instead facing the dilemma of wtf do I do now that I am an orphan and don't have Mom or Dad to take care of anymore?
Baby boomers have the great blessing of having our parents with us later in life, thanks to longer life expectancy. When I was a kid and Nana died from cancer at 72, it was equivalent to passing from old age.
Now the older I get, the older old is.
It's not uncommon for people to live into their 80's or even 90's. We first struggle with how to best care for them, while juggling our insane lives of work and raising our own kids and grandkids, and dealing with the pitfalls of the unknown about aging. Plus guilt. Never feeling like we're doing enough to repay for the life they've blessed us with. Then we assist them with facing the inevitable transition from this life to beyond, which is worthy of its own message separate from this.
Here I am, just over 3 months after saying goodbye to Mom, trying to figure out what to do on my Mom's Day. The voices in my head are still questioning, "What are you taking Mom for lunch? What do you mean you're not going to Mom's?! For Christ's sake it's Wednesday!!!"
When will these voices grow silent?
Will they ever?
"What are Mom's pots doing on my stove?"
I cook a lot on Wednesdays (they're still my day off). It's a form of meditation as I ponder what to do with my empty nest.
Peace and love,