The thrill, anticipation and pride of seeing your children succeed and land a place at university is tempered by the end of September when it is time to pack their gear and face empty nest blues! For many, especially if it is the last of your kids to have left home, you’re now wondering, “Who am I? and What do I do now”?
Sometimes it takes a while to come to the realisation that you are now on your own. You’ve been helping to raise them and preparing them to go out into the world on their own and suddenly that time has come and gone (and so are they!). You look around only to wonder, what now?
Coping with empty nest blues
The time seemed so far off, that you just weren’t prepared when it finally arrived. So, now it’s time to start thinking about all those things you told yourself you would do, “If only I had time, I’d love to …”
When you stop to think about it, you’ve really come to a good time in your life. The kids are grown, have lives of their own, you’re now free to do all “Those things you keep telling yourself you’d do.” Thing is, now you have to remember just what they were! Well, this little article is just to get you to thinking!
It’s never to late to start something new either. Put yourself in the position of your kids, they’ve gone off to learn something new. You may be older, so why don’t you look at further education too.
You can chose to study in class or virtually through the many universities and academic bodies that offer online courses, such as Open University, Future Learn or even something less formal through University of the Third Age. There are all kinds of courses you could take on a lot of different subjects. Think of any that might be of interest to you?
Maybe a degree of some sort that you’d like to go for? I know of some who went for their nursing degree in their late 30s early 40s!
Don’t allow empty nest blues to control you. If you had hobbies that you put aside because you didn’t have enough time to really devote to them? If not, then start some new ones! Just think of some new things that you would like to learn how to do, then go sign up for some classes! You might even make some new friends in the process.
There’s also volunteer work. Places like hospitals, nursing homes the Salvation Army. They are always looking for someone to help out. Lots of other similar places too. It can be a really rewarding feeling knowing that you are really needed.
What about schools? Like volunteering to help tutor some students? Could be primary or secondary school. I’m sure that would be really appreciated and helpful to the students too. Or, if not, volunteering; see if there are any openings for teachers’ aides in any of the schools in your area.
Of course there are sports activities you can take up to escape empty nest blues. Like tennis? Golf? Bowling? Get some of your friends and join a league. If they don’t want to, then do it by yourself. There again, you always have room for new friends in your life! (Not to mention you can keep active and get exercise at the same time)
The rebirth of date night
Ok, now, for those of you who are married (or have a significant other), well, need I say more? Let’s get that romance back! Start taking some week-ends together. Go out to dinner or the movies. Take a cruise! (They are really nice and can be very romantic). This time can be almost like getting to know each other all over again! Make it fun and interesting. You sometimes get so wrapped up in the kids’ lives that you forget you have one of your own. Just use your imagination. Remember, you’re still young, enjoy life!
Some of you out there are saying, “But I’m single and have to work for a living!” Well, if you haven’t been really happy with the job you have now, maybe this is a good time to start looking for a new career? Maybe start your own business? If you are happy with your present job; are there some courses that you can take that might help to get a promotion or just make things easier for you? You can still find some new things to do just for yourself, even if it’s just getting out more with your friends.
Empty nest blues are there to be beaten
Remember, the kids are through with school, all grown up and on their own. Time to start looking around and see just what you want to do with you life now! Single or married, there’s lots out there for you, just put your thinking cap on!
No sitting around feeling sorry for yourself because you’re feeling “deserted” or not “needed”. Well, it’s ok for a little while, but not for long! Once you get use to your new found independence, well, watch out!
Besides, they always know they can come visit any time they want.
For more content on coping with changing family relationships, visit our relationships and dating channel.Tags: empty nest syndrome, relationships Last modified: September 6, 2021