This morning I was driving to the airport to pick up a friend and my daughter called me and asked if I knew where her shoes were. I didn’t recall right away but as I searched through the corridors of my mom brain I remembered that I had seen them in the entry way by the front door. (In plain sight, of course.) I heard my own mom talking in my head, “If it were a snake, it’d ‘v bit you.” But I refrained from allowing that voice in my head to go live mostly because I needed to get off the phone and pay attention to my navigation system.
After the ‘goodbye’s’ and ‘I love you’s’, I thought how her voice seemed sleepy and those shoes would have been visible to even the most oblivious passerby so she likely didn’t even look for them. She knew I would know where they were and opted for the easy button – me.
This one is my baby. We’ve successfully launched two from the nest already so I know how this goes and I know it will all work out. Having recently turned 18 and with high school graduation looming, her launch is but a few page turns away.
I thought about how very soon I will not be her easy button. I won’t know where her shoes are. This thought made me sad.
I also thought about what other things will have the opportunity to fill my brain since I will not be filling up my last few precious brain cells with keeping up with someone else’s belongings. This thought made me happy.
For every ending, there is a new beginning. #whatnow (click to tweet)
Regardless of what stage of notherhood you are in, if you have launched a child, your life as a mom almost immediately became different.
All of those lunches we packed, all those school t-shirts we bought, all of those birthday parties we planned, all those fundraisers we supported… those places in our hearts and minds need to be filled with something else. We need to find things that help us breathe in deeply this newfound open space. Things that helps us look forward to a new day.
We nothers definitely have a grieving process to navigate when our parenting work is done. But we also have the opportunity to seek out and embrace new adventures ahead.
I am finding such joy in the new adventures of writing and going where I’d like when I’d like. Nothers, just because our kids have their own lives now, it doesn’t mean that our lives are over.
What is or was your new beginning when your children flew away? What scares you about living your own life after your kids have grown and flown? Can you share here or on the Facebook post what you have found to enjoy that fills the space in your mind that is no longer needed for finding shoes? Let’s encourage one another.
We may not always know where our kid’s shoes are but we can put our own on and keep moving forward.