Empty Nest · Enjoying Life Without Guilt · Needing Some Me Time · Parenting Young Adults · Taking Time for Me · Uncategorized

A Free Saturday But Why I am feeling this way? 

Today is Saturday and it actually felt SO good to NOT have anywhere I HAD to be, to NOT have any schedules, to NOT have to drive or fly to participate in my kids’ extracurricular activities. For the first Saturday in a very long time I have either been packing, purging, moving from one house to the next, unpacking, taking someone to train athletically,  or to get a hair cut, or to attend a function. Hopefully you are beginning to get the message I’m trying to send. 

Life has been so complicated as of late that it has forced me to condition myself to NOT knowing any other way but busyness, schedules, and fatigue. So today I should have kicked backed, listened to some music, relaxed,  or ate a favorite meal to celebrate this day. Instead, I was tired, achy, kind of somber, and not at all in a celebratory mood to enjoy my free Saturday. Somewhere  on the inside of me, I felt like I should be doing something. You know I could have went to the grocery store, walked around and shopped until my cart was too heavy to push. I could have went to that huge SAMs and stocked up on drinks and food. That would have been productive, but instead I chose NOT to “do SAMs”. Today I chose NOT to rip and run and wear myself out, only to be tired and exhausted later. 

That decision made me feel like I was not taking advantage of the time I had to “get things done”. I knew the famous and most popular question would come, “What’s for dinner?” I am a wife and mother and that’s what we do right? We make sure there is food on the table just waiting for someone to grab a plate and a fork to eat it. Well today, I chose not one of the most healthiest places, but by popular vote, Popeyes Chicken to be the chef!  I figured I killed more than two birds with that stone: 1) no grocery store trip 2) no prep work and 3) no cooking for me. All I had to do was get in my car and drive 15 minutes to the nearest location, order, and then return home. 

Why The Guilt? 

Part of me writing this post is to say that sometimes we don’t enjoy our free time because we don’t know how to enjoy it. We feel guilty for just taking a day off and doing absolutely nothing. We allow ourselves to work as machines and then when our bodies start to fail us, we wonder why and how did this occur? 

For me, I have to learn it’s okay to relax. That, in itself, is hard for me because after being a wife for 23 years and a mother for 20 years, that’s pretty much all I know is “doing”, “serving”, and “‘making it happen”. Today I switched things up. I did somethings I normally don’t do. The part I have to work on is being at peace with my decisions to not be the race horse or the “go to person”. I have to learn to say “no” and by now everyone in my household is capable of doing for themselves. In fact of the six persons, five of them can drive and take some of the load off me. 

My Prayer 

My prayer for me today and for others like me is to understand that God created rest for us all. It is written that even He rested on the seventh day. Let us not feel guilty or less of a person for taking time to absolutely do Nothing. 

Side note: I did take longer time on my hair and I put on makeup today which is something I usually don’t do. I went to the mall and exchanged an item and invested some dollars on myself. All of these are huge wins because for one part of my day, I took care of me and did something as minute and simple to some, For Me! Oh and I can’t leave out the fact that I treated myself to an ice cream cone! 

Yes, it started off rough but my day ended quite selfishly and I don’t feel guilty at all! 

Empty Nest · faith · Parenting Young Adults

Empty Nest? Is it really happening? 

Realizing that I will soon be an empty nester gives me mixed feelings and emotions. For one, I have a difficult time figuring out where all the time went. I remember my 20 year old being a baby as if it were yesterday. My 17 year old was my shadow and followed me everywhere I went. Somehow my sweet 14 year old son stretched to  5’11 and gained weight to become a 185 pounder. I understood that they would all grow into mature adults and would leave the nest one day, but what I didn’t realize was how I would feel about it. 

Some days I feel as if I am in a dream where I’m being swallowed up by a whirling tornado where nothing looks or feels the same. Other days I feel as though I am at peace with their growth and maturity and I can even picture our house being empty with just the two of us. It’s hard to imagine such a life but I know that the day will come where the nest will be empty and the days that I know now will be no more. 

I try to embrace it as we are taught to embrace the positive, the good, and the changes that life brings. Though difficult, it is real and somehow I will learn to sit back and appreciate their paths and the journey that God has ordained for them.

I am reminded of Ecclesiastes where it says in Chapter 3 verse 1 (NIV). 

“There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under the heavens”

This time of my life is for growing and planting. I am beginning to realize that just as they are preparing to leave the nest, I must also prepare for this stage of life. My hope is that when they leave, I would have instilled in them the very foundation of our belief.  I will pray that it will be so deeply rooted that in their older days they will remember and adhere to it.

“Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.”

‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭22:6‬ ‭KJV‬‬