I’ve been an empty nester officially now for three months, two weeks, and five days, and I have loved every single glorious moment. The quiet evenings, the relatively clean kitchen (my husband, Doo, still doesn’t seem to understand that we have a dishwasher), and the peace of mind that can only come when your babies-turned-young-adults are no longer underfoot have been simply magical. Which is why I am somewhat dreading the holidays, as my college kiddos will once again be home.
Don’t get me wrong, it’ll be great to see them, especially our twins who are studying in Colorado and California. But why, sweet mother, do classes not resume until the end of January? Why must universities start second semesters so ridiculously late? Do they not realize the disruption these extended breaks will cause to my beautifully crafted, long-awaited parental milestone? This is enough time to form actual habits, like 1 a.m. muffin baking and sleeping ‘til noon. This will enable my newly independent offspring to rejoin the dole, which in turn will fundamentally alter our Meijer bill and undoubtedly drive me bat-poo crazy.
And one of them is bringing her cat! I haven’t even begun to wrap my head around how a temporary pet is going to add to the chaos. No, my only chance at survival will be to convince them to return early. Perhaps between a few white lies (“We’re vegetarians now” and “The dryer’s broken”) and guilt trips about their jobs (“The lab really needs you there!”), I’ll manage to convince them to leave ahead of schedule.
Fingers crossed! Because I have grown to love being an empty nester.