I’ve talked with a lot of women lately who have shared their frustrations about being an empty nester. I heard about frustrations related to jobs, family and self. Moms are frustrated that they don’t have the same relationship with their kids. They are frustrated about not knowing what to do with themselves now that their full-time mom job has just ended. They are also frustrated with jobs/careers that had to look a certain way when they were full-time moms, but that they want to change now that they have more options. Just like you, all of these frustrations stem from the changes going on in their lives.
When I heard these moms telling me their frustrations, I could relate to most of them. I too have felt this change in my life. I’ve dealt with the shifts and continue to adjust even more as time passes.
You’ve spent 18 years raising your kids and being in a daily relationship with them. You’ve been with your kids through the ups & downs of daily life. You watched them make friends and learn new skills. You were there to hug them when they got hurt and you were there to scold them when they did something wrong. The thing is that you were there with them through it all and now that they’ve moved out, you’re not. They are often many miles away. You don’t see them every morning and night. You don’t hear about the ups and downs of their days over dinner. One day they are still in your house and the next they are off in their college dorm or an apartment creating their own lives. You’re relationship with your kids has shifted and it’s hard to make that adjustment overnight.
Many of the moms I spoke with were also frustrated at not knowing what to do with themselves now that their time commitments have shifted (drastically in some cases). I spoke with one mom who told me that her interests/hobbies from before she had kids no longer were interesting. She didn’t want those previous activities, but she also didn’t know what she did want. She wants to find something that she can proudly do. In addition, she wants to show her kids that she can move on without them and that her life didn’t end just because the kids moved out.
Finally many moms spoke of dissatisfaction with their jobs/careers. I really related to this one as well. Moms often pick a job because of the hours. If a job is flexible or can be worked around your kid’s school & activities, then that is a huge bonus. However, this might not be our perfect job once the kids leave.
This was so familiar to me because I taught yoga classes around my kids schedules. I taught the classes that caused the least amount of time conflict. That way, I could be there when my kids needed me. I could pick them up from school and feed them dinner. This worked out very well when my kids were younger but it wasn’t an ideal job. I was exhausted from all of the running around for both school & my yoga classes. It wasn’t something that I wanted to keep doing once I didn’t need to schedule around my kids.
All of these frustrations center around the sudden change that happens when your child moves out of your house. One day you’re scheduling everything around your kids, putting your own dreams on hold and being in the moment, each day with them. Then, they leave and your whole routine has shifted.
It’s a bit disorientating to have this shift happen. It’s even more so, when you’re not prepared for it or wanting it to take place. Being not ready to face the fact that your children either will leave soon or have already done so, makes this transition into empty nester even harder.
In Empty Nest Essentials, I’ll help you begin the process to uncover the root causes behind your own frustrations in this chapter of life. Because what is frustrating to one mom is not necessarily frustrating to all moms. Regardless, all of these frustrations are normal.
You’re going through a huge life transition. You don’t have to do it alone. Join with other moms to begin to shift your own life. Get rid of these frustrations. Get to know yourself again!
We begin this round of Empty Nest Essentials on February 3rd. Don’t wait. Sign up and start to move forward again with your life.
I’d love to hear what frustrates you in this time of life. Share your thoughts below.