My husband and I became empty nesters these last few years and let me tell you, it didn’t come soon enough. I love my children. They really are two amazing young men. But I have found that they seem so much more amazing to me now that they are living on their own.
But as an empty nester, I find that making plans is really not something that I, or we, ever do anymore. I am not saying we don’t ever do anything, we just don’t plan on it beforehand. This weekend, this long sun and parade filled weekend that is stretching out ahead of me, really has no plans made or it at all.
But that wasn’t always the case. As our children grew up, I planned everything. Even when the children were first born, it seemed I was already planning out what they would look like, what college they would go to, what their lovely future wives and children would be and look like; I planned everything. I planned out the meals for the week, I planned on when I would be cleaning house, mowing the yard, changing the filters in my refrigerator, swapping out the seasonal wreaths on my front door. I am exhausted writing and reading that shit now, what was I thinking then??
And there was so much heartache that came with all this planning. For weeks before Christmas and birthdays, I would lay awake at night and plan out the perfect gifts to give them and how they should be wrapped. I would imagine beautiful smiles lighting up their sweet smudged faces as they excitedly unwrapped their gifts and they would shower me and my husband with kisses and hugs that told us with no words at all how much they loved and appreciated us. Well, that shit just never happened.
But you know, I seemed to do that with every part of my life. Regardless of whether it was something I was planning with my husband, children, in-laws, friends, etc., I seemed to plan out not only the details of the event but also the reactions I wanted to get out of it. And when those reactions didn’t come to fruition, I was so hurt and let down. And I always blamed everyone else for ruining that special occasion.
It has taken me an entire lifetime to finally come to the realization that all that hurt was not coming from the people I was participating with but from within myself and my own delusional expectations. Now, I am not going to apologize to any of them for doing that all those years, but it is a good thing for me to realize, don’t ya think?
So this long glorious weekend that we have ahead of us, I may sleep in late, or I may not; depending on if I give any nookie to my husband and then guilt him into taking the dogs out in the morning. I may read the new Stephen King book or I may just play solitaire on my Kindle.
But what you should plan on doing is learning from my bad example and not plan those events and reactions so much that they ruin your weekend.
Have a wonderful Memorial Day weekend.