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College

Empty Nest Syndrome…Is For The Birds…

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This is my son, Jake. Cutie patootie, right? He is 4 years old, loves apple juice, Thomas the tank engine, tearing through my house faster than the Tasmanian devil and endlessly watching The Lion King.   Oops. That was then….. Meaning 15 years ago. This is now:
Yes, he is 19 – a bit older. Would you believe his interests have somewhat changed?? He loves cooking anything greasy and or spicy, reading long theological books and randomly analyzing his mother and sister. When he graduates, He wants to be a psychologist and open up a clinic to help children with PDD. Being diagnosed at age 8 with Asperger’s syndrome, Jake is a success story and wants to help other children so – and I quote “they won’t grow up feeling like a total out – of- place idiot everywhere they go.”  In other words, My son wants to save the world…

As the end of His freshman year at college comes to a close, I have just one constant thought that dances through my mind –

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         Looks like we made it!!

(Oh Lawd how he would hate it if he knew I compared his life to a Barry Manolo song. Good thing that neither of my children are especially supportive of my blog. They have no idea whatsoever the cruel things I say about them.)

Anyhow, back to the pictures… and yes, I am well aware that they are screen shots from my Facebook but I have no idea how to save my pics and then post it. And the one person who does know is now off at college – hence the blog post on empty nest syndrome.

Any hoo- I received a phone call from our interim associate pastor today.

HER: Hi there – we are starting an empty nest support group and a little bird told me you might be interested.

ME: “Errrrrrrrrr. Ummmmmm.” I squeak; sucking back 2000 gulps of air. “Oh really, somebody told on me- I mean – somebody told you that?” My face burns and tears begin to collect in the corners of my eyes. “No! No! You’re mistaken. I’m doing much better. No support needed here!” I say trying to hold it all in. “I mean, seriously, it’s selfish to miss your child so much, right?” I say while hearing my voice cracking.

HER: “Well no, I think it’s normal and being around others that are sharing a similar struggle can be very soothing.”

ME: “Ohhhhhh ummmm thank you very much. I don’t need to be soothed. In fact, I think it may make things worse if I’m reminded that he’s no longer here. You know, the whole yanking the scab off a wound thing? My scab and I, we’ll think about your support group though and we’ll keep in touch.”  My scab and I tell her.

Now It’s one of those – I wish I hadn’t even answered the phone call days… The whole thing put me in such a puddle dither, it makes me sad all over again.  I don’t need some stupid support group. What are we gonna do, sit around with our snotty nosed mascara smeared faces  and boo hoo about the last bird that flew the coop?! No thank you.

I have to ask… What is it that makes some people go through this transition so much easier than others? Is it because they are not a single momma? If you’re married, You won’t be coming home to an empty nest. Not really. Big bird daddy will Still be around. Is it because others have better coping skills? A more vibrant career all set up? For the love of George Washington, I’ve still got one at home…how could I be sad?!??

ONE

ONE chickadee LEFT. THREE YEARS and then that lil bird will be flying away too. Uggggg!!!

Is it just me? Do I need to just get a life. I thought I had one….. Being a mother 🙁

My scab and I will report back to you in the near future with our decision on the support group. In the meantime, any and all advice is welcome.

Francey is Fancy

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Jake just got home from his overseas trip to France.  For the last year, we paid $300.00 a month so Jake could venture out into the unknown and visit fabulous places. By June 8th, we are paid off and Jake is sipping hot chocolate coco in Chenonceau.
Yup, he took a picture of his hot coco:
I have never ~ in his nearly 17 years of life ~ been away from Jake for nine days straight.  It was……weird.  There were no late night visits to the refrigerator awaking me at 3:02 a.m. as he scours the shelves. The house remained clean and in order as there were no dirty crusty half eaten salsa bowls, open bags of tortilla chips left open to stale, and dirty ice cream spoons sitting in plain view that are constantly littering my counter tops. The faint odor of feet/socks/old gym shorts that floats down our stairway into my nostrils had actually begun to subside. Izzy even made the comment “momma, our house is so clean, is this the way it’s going to be when Jake goes off to college???” Sadly, I look around at my tidy abode. “Yes. sniff, sniff. I suppose so.”
I have to admit, Jake will be missed when he leaves for college. It will definitely take some adjusting: who in the world is going to take out the trash?? That is so GROSS! Who will walk the dogs? Turn off all the lights at night making sure the doors are locked? And whom, may I ask will keep the house finely stocked with chocolate treats hidden neatly in all corners of our home?????? Who, pretell, will scour my purse, chew ALL of my bubble gum; leaving the empty wrappers as evidence on the floor (of all places.) Will there be a demand for freshly cooked meals? I would say who will be there to scrub the muddy golf cart but since he is the only one getting it muddy, I guess I can’t count that one.
The night after Jake returned,
I made my sweet son spaghetti for his welcome home meal.  As he slurps noodles, Jake is having a fabulous time flaunting discussing his trip. Here are a couple of his 388 pics he took while visiting:

 

 
I asked Jake if he thought about his mother at all on his trip.  “Yes, momma, I did. I even took a picture for you”:
A pink scooter for his momma to ride through the streets of Paris. Sweet boy! :)