Skip to main content

Empty-Nest Anticipation and Other Musings of the Middle-Aged

Not too many years ago, our family seemed large: teenagers everywhere, someone always coming or going, and a menagerie of animals that needed attention. 

Later this week, three kids are headed back to college, and we'll have only one child left at home.  I knew this would be a change, but it's going to be quieter than I expected.  This has not been a good summer for our pets.  In June, Oreos, our cat, died suddenly one night in her sleep.  Earlier this month, as I have already posted, our basset hound Lucy got sick and didn't make it.  And just this morning, I am sad to report that even Superman, the guinea pig, succumbed. He lived a good long guinea pig life--6 years or so, I think. 

I'm beginning to realize how much noise comes with having a houseful of people and animals.  I'm reminded of the children's book, Too Much Noise.  Except I find myself expecting the doggie door to flap open, and Lucy to come running, whenever I am in the backyard.  I expect to hear the soft patter of Crystal's feet, as she walks across the carpet.  I expect to hear the cute chirps and giggles of Superman when I walk into the room.  Fortunately, I still hear the happy, contented sounds of the hens, and though Reepicheep the rat is quiet, he makes his presence known as a permanent fixture on the shoulder of youngest daughter.  (As a side note, I'm so impressed with what a great pet a rat makes!)

I've always envisioned myself handling an empty nest fairly well.  I love my children and I delight in watching them mature into responsible adults. That joy for their successes exceeds the selfish desire to keep them as children.  I think the last time I was bored I was about 7 years old.  I don't anticipate running out of things to do.  I'm not generally energized by crowds of people, but rather enjoy quiet times.  And yet, I'm thinking this fall might seem a bit too quiet.  If this fall is quiet, just how quiet will the future be, when even the youngest is out on her own? 

Like Peter in  Too Much Noise, I suppose I could get a donkey, etc., but that would just mask the real question:  What am I going to be, when my children are all grown up?  :-)

Comments

  1. Wow...you've lost too many pets this summer! I'm so sorry!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Conversations are so much nicer when more than one person does the talking. :-) Please leave a comment and let me know your thoughts; I'd love to hear from you!

Popular posts from this blog

It's #RootsTech Giveaway Time!

In February of 2018, not knowing exactly what to expect, I attended RootsTech for the first time. What I learned is that RootsTech has something for everyone, from the most beginner of beginners to professional DNA genealogists. If you are interested in your own family story, come to RootsTech! RootsTech offers over 300 classes, amazing keynote speakers, an Expo Hall packed with all sorts of vendors, and evening cultural events. 

After an enjoyable experience in 2018, I returned in 2019, and even got my husband, John, to come one of the days to hear Saroo Brierley give a keynote address. 

Speaking of keynote addresses, this week RootsTech just announced that one of the speakers for 2020 will be David Hume Kennerly, a Pulitzer Prize winning photographer. I can't wait to hear his story!

RootsTech 2020 will celebrate its 10th anniversary, and is bound to be the best one yet! I have been delighted to be accepted as an official RootsTech ambassador. One of the perks is that I received a c…

Ten Things of Thankful: Nearly Christmas Edition

This is a busy time of year, and though it isn't as busy for me as it has been in past years, my to-do list still seems longer than the hours in the days. However, I find that when I spend time to focus on the reason for the season, I can feel the joy of Christmas and the tasks-at-hand fall back into their proper place. This week I had the opportunity to attend some wonderful events, and I'd love to take you along for a virtual tour:

Let's start at the Conference Center on Temple Square in Salt Lake City, Utah, last Friday night. The Tabernacle Choir joined with the Orchestra at Temple Square and the Bells on Temple Square, along with dancers and guest artists Kelli O'Hara and Richard Thomas, to present a spectacular Christmas concert. Although I couldn't record any of the performance, the following 2-minute video from the church provides an overview:




The last time John and I had attended a Christmas concert by the Tabernacle Choir, they were still holding those conc…

Ten Things of Thankful: Dad's Influence Edition

Here in the United States, it is Father's Day weekend. I did not realize until recently that Father's Day was not officially made a holiday until 1972. 1972! Now, while I realize that many people consider 1972 eons ago, I do not. I'm glad that fathers have a day of recognition now, because they surely deserve acknowledgement. 
I thought for this week's Ten Things of Thankful post, I would list ten lessons I'm thankful my dad taught me.
My dad is a teacher. Not only did he impart his knowledge to countless junior high aged kids throughout his career, he taught--and still teaches--my siblings and me. He is not a preachy teacher; he's a humble man whose lessons I feel like I learned through osmosis.
When he would get home from work, we'd all sit down as a family for supper. Often, our phone would ring, and on the other end of the line would be a parent of one of my dad's students. 
Hello, Mrs. _______. How can I help you? . . . (an irate woman's voice is h…