With our last child having recently launched, the idea of one coming back has not been one I’ve thought anything about. I would love to think that, should my kids ever need to boomerang, I would be as welcoming as gracious as my friend, Sarah’s, mom has been to her. And I would pray that my kids would be as conscientious and accommodating as Sarah has been with her mom. Thank you, Sarah, for sharing a tale from the other side of Notherhood.
I was never planning to move back home. (click to tweet)
I’m a fiercely independent firstborn and moving back home was simply not on my radar. I also wasn’t planning on losing my dad to Leukemia when I was 26, leaving my world turned upside down. When my landlords informed me they were selling, a little voice told me to move home. I broke the news to my mom who tried to contain her excitement for the return of her firstborn. While yes, moving home qualifies me as a boomeranging millennial, I am also a firm believer in the “no free rides” theocracy. I offered to pay rent upon my return and my mom accepted my offer.
Moving in required a tad bit of adjusting to our new normal in our family home. Not only were two adults and one recent high school graduate living under one roof, our family was missing a member and we needed time to find our new dynamic within our family. Our roles have slightly shifted based on personalities which can cause a slight conflict, but nothing world ending. As the foodie of the family, I often found myself making dinner for everyone. After talking it over, a cooking schedule was created. Moving back home my mom and I have learned to communicate as two grown adults with a mutual respect for one another and not simply mother and daughter.
My parents were never helicopter parents and my space and time have always been respected. Upon moving home, I was able to set up my couch and desk in a spare room giving me my own corner of the house. Creating a much-needed reprieve when my introverted self needs to regroup and Mom wants to watch Real Housewives. We learned to make a chore chart to avoid anyone feeling as though they were the only one cleaning the kitchen. Chore charts are not just for small kids you know. Knowing our responsibly and the responsibilities of others have helped keep the resentment of household chores at bay. While this system isn’t full proof, it’s helped. We take turns cooking meals and yes, my college-aged brother cooks too. Some days I have to literally eat my words as he cooks store brand pasta on a college kid budget. If nothing else, I will send him off to his future wife with a few life skills. I’d like to think this experience of living at home later in life is helping me be more prepared for a marriage too.
Another adjustment we’re learning to handle is money. Again, my “No free rides” theory. We take turns picking up the tab and being upfront about it on our way to dinner. Some days we each pay our own bill and some weeks we take turns. I have a job and 4o1k, I can afford dinner. Unless someone wins the lotto, talking about finances is never fun for any of us. Being transparent about money has taught my brother and me about the cost of maintaining a home and car. Do I need to know all of my mom’s personal finances? No. She doesn’t know mine either, but she is a widow adjusting to one income and I didn’t grow up with a trust fund to cash in at 25 so were both living budget-conscious lifestyle.
I’m not sure when I’ll move out or if my brother ever will. Maybe mom will get tired of us and tell us to go find our own home, I doubt it, but she might. For now, we’re here, enjoying a few extra family years.
Sarah is a Georgia Peach who attempts to live a life full of adventure and wonder. She writes about living life to the fullest with a little help from Jesus and touch of snark over at mycompletemayhem.net