Column: Pining for an empty nest


Commentary by Danielle Wilson

As I sit contemplating a recent email, I’m reminded that my husband Doo and I are on the verge of something wonderful. The aforementioned message was from our medical provider, dutifully informing us that we no longer have access to our oldest’s health records, including the diagnosis and prescribed care for a broken nose he suffered yesterday on his 18th birthday (yes, the same kid who crashed his grandfather’s car on Mother’s Day, four days after receiving his driver’s license, was on the wrong end of a particularly hard and pointy elbow during a PE class basketball game. Of course, I’ve already been blamed, as I’m the mean mom who refused to call him out for first period so he could sleep in on his most special of days).

We are now officially the parents of an adult, albeit one with a now slightly crooked nose. And even though science says his brain won’t be fully developed until he’s 25, I am within my legal rights to kick him out of the house and wish him best of luck. Hallelujah!  Not that we have any mind to do so, but it’s comforting to know we have the option. Am I right?

But I digress. The point is, Doo and I are fast-approaching a new phase in our lives, one without carpool duties, homework panic attacks and band fundraisers. God willing, all four of our precious little angels will be gone in less than six years. I know that parenting never gets easier, that my children will always cause me worry, but I have to admit I am totally looking forward to a Wilson empty-nest.

So in addition to a dangerous but kinda-cool crossbow gift and a hilarious “What’s-Up? Chicken Butt” card, we celebrated the bejeesus out of this milestone birthday. A cupcake breakfast, Spongebob balloons and a Benihana dinner. Throw in an emergency room visit and you have the makings of, if not a perfect day, at least a memorable one.

Happy 18th, my darling! Dad and I are thrilled HIPAA now applies to you! Peace out.