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Empty Nest Woes?

Updated on December 4, 2019

An Empty Room

Changes Around Our House

Two weekends ago, life at our house changed drastically! It emptied, with the exception of my husband and I. We went from a full house to an empty nest. As you face this situation, perhaps you will have some of the same thoughts and feelings!

Our son moved back to town last Fall. After being gone for five years, he became part of the family again. He was engaged to be married and needed a temporary dwelling place for a few months. Dad and I were fine with that. He moved into his old room, now the office. Our daughter continued to live with us while attending college to cut costs. After graduation, although employed, she continued to look for that perfect job which would enable her to continue her education and just recently found it.

Two weekends ago, our son married. During his honeymoon, we moved his remaining belongings to his new place of residence. He and his new bride continue to live here in town. Three days later, our daughter moved to another city to begin her new endeavors. There are still boxes in her room that need to be moved at some point. While our house is empty of children, it is still in transition.

The Changes

Understand that our kids are wonderful people. They are easy to get along with, not too demanding, and extremely lovable, however neither one thinks that a well made bed is an asset or worth the time it takes. Laundry and house chores are not at the top of their list or anywhere near the top. They love to eat Mom's home cooked meal. Get the picture?

Yes, I have times when I feel a moment of longing for those family meals or riding in the car together. I see their rooms and my heart throbs, but only for a moment. This is a great season for all! Their dreams are being fulfilled. Life is going on and more exciting life events lie around the corner!

I can slightly imagine what a widow would feel after losing her spouse. The emptiness at times feels like an ache, an ache to see or hear that person we love so much.

I love cooking for two, not having to pick up or clean after adult children, and having our own personal space! We can see a movie without phone calls inquiring where we are and when we will be home though it is nice to have someone worrying about you. We can eat our favorite foods and have leftovers in the refrigerator for lunches.

And Then...

"I'm coming home this weekend." A visit so soon? I was just getting used to the empty nest! Hey wait a minute. There isn't really an empty nest season, is there? There will always be visits and phone calls, cell phones and texting make communication so easy! Eventually, there will be grandchildren that visit... aaaah, something to look forward to. In the meantime, we will enjoy our spurts of time together. Those short visits will be fun times of catching up and enjoying each others company and remembering.

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  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    9 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Thank you Masmasika. We all get through it somehow and adapt to the changes as our children grow. Blessings to you as you face the future.

  • profile image


    9 years ago

    Very moving hub. I am a single parent and I loathe to see my son go when he will finally finish college and have a job. But then that is the way life will be. We love our children so much but time will always come when they will have their own family and we are left on our own. Great hub and voted up.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Pmccray, you certainly had so much more adjusting to do than I. Good for you that you grew from it! That is a wonderful testimony! Thanks for sharing and many blessings to you!

  • pmccray profile image


    10 years ago from Utah

    LOL LOL I know the feeling. The year after my 2nd husband passed away my son graduated from high school and enlisted in the Air Force.

    I cried for a week, but afterward learned to enjoy my new season of life. Still a Mom from afar, a widow and single for the first time in 20 years. It took some time to adjust, but 15 years later, that time helped me become a better me. Wonderful hub, voted up, marked useful, awesome.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Thanks for the feedback! It becomes a season with lots of transition! Thanks for stopping by!

  • lorlie6 profile image

    Laurel Rogers 

    10 years ago from Bishop, Ca

    Boy, do I relate to this, PaulaK. My hubby and I had a heavenly 1 1/2 years to ourselves after our son moved away to attend tech school.

    But then he came back to this little town of ours and he's here almost daily!

    We are very proud that he loves this community and wishes to raise his family here, but I admit longing for the simplicity of 'the two!'

    Great hub.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Granny's House, it is a great time for us too though some days I REALLY miss them1

  • Granny's House profile image

    Granny's House 

    10 years ago from Older and Hopefully Wiser Time

    I have five kids. They are all married and on their own. I love it! For my husband and me its like a honeymoon.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    HappyHer, you are in for a season of transition. That first child leaving is very hard. They do however come for lots of visits when college is in the picture. Once they have left, it is never the same again! Been there!

  • HappyHer profile image

    Tracy Morrow 

    10 years ago from Cleveland, OH

    With my daughter leaving to go out of state for college this month, this hub hit me deeply. We still won't have an empty nest, but I'm all ready looking at her room and missing her.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Thanks Audrey. It sounds like we are in the same season of life!

  • akirchner profile image

    Audrey Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Washington

    Oh my - BJ's little poem is frightening! ha ha I always worry that they will want to come back but guess that is not very nice! I am like you though - I've never been happier since Bob and I have a few years to grow old together and not DO so much with so many people! He had a harder time than I did but then again, I worked awfully hard on my kids and with my kids! I need some 'me' time!! Great thoughts!!!

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Carol, it sounds like you related well to my hub! A friend of mine suggested the next hub should be Revolving Door! Maintaining the daughter's cat for so long is a heroic deed for sure!

    Pamela, sounds like you have been there! Thanks for your comment!

  • Pamela99 profile image

    Pamela Oglesby 

    10 years ago from Sunny Florida

    I relate to this hub perfectly. It's not bad to simplify live and have a home that is quieter and less work for you. Then the occasional visits are special.

  • CarolRucker profile image

    Carol Rucker 

    10 years ago from Cincinnati

    I am one of those mothers that says "empty nest" with a big smile on my face. I love my children, but I am divorced and worked very hard to raise them to the wonderful adults they are today.

    I still remember my spare bedroom that was supposed to be my jewelry workshop space; but between my two grown children, it was always filled up with unpacked boxes and stuff.... lots of stuff. My kids, both married now, came and went with college, military and other life activities.

    My daughter's cat(I am not a cat person) stayed with me for seven years, through her undergraduate years and European research trips....until she got married.

    The answer to the return problem is getting them married off or moving into a very small apartment.

  • PaulaK profile imageAUTHOR

    Paula Kirchner 

    10 years ago from Austin. Texas

    Thanks for the sharing about the empty nest! I was thinking about single parents and the empty nest and it seems it would be much harder for them. I empathize. Drbj, thanks for the appropriate poem. I didn't know you were talented in poetry!

  • drbj profile image

    drbj and sherry 

    10 years ago from south Florida

    Hi, Paula. Your empty nest hub drove me to compose this:

    When you have an empty nest, you finally get a rest.

    But one thing you will learn, sometimes the kids return. :)

  • 2besure profile image

    Pamela Lipscomb 

    10 years ago from Charlotte, North Carolina

    I was a mom, that was my identity, when my only child (a son) joined the army after High School, it was the most difficult thing that had ever happened to me. It was like I lost my purpose. I got over it. But I am glad I only have to go through this once.

  • suziecat7 profile image


    10 years ago from Asheville, NC

    Loved this Hub. Children are wonderful but it's great to just be the two of you again. Thanks for sharing.


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