Empty nest.

Tell us about a journey — whether a physical trip you took, or an emotional one.

Today my eldest, my firstborn left the nest.
There is silence about her going,
as we all come to terms with the empty space she has left.small__5023182238
Today I cannot help but grieve.

Twenty one years ago,
I began to incubate the egg that was she.
I was filled with great joy, wonder, fear, and love.

When she eventually entered our nest,
we felt so complete.
Our nest was warmed by her presence.

Those early years of mothering,
were the best and worst years of my life.
The love I felt was overwhelming.
Frustration and exhaustion came in equal measure.
As she grew so too did our wonder,
was there ever a child as clever?

All too soon I was expected to begin to push her out.
Everyone was going to playschool.
I held on as long as I could,
but for both of us it was time.
She walked away and I was left behind.

But all did not go smoothly.
“Separation anxiety” was what they called it.
She was missing me was what I called it.
I was holding her too tight,
it was time to help her let go.
So with a breaking heart I gently pushed and she was gone.

That push was for me the beginning of the end.
For my baby bird it was the start of everything.
What transformations occurred within a few short years!
In no time at all,
she was taking up more space in our nest than I was.
A beautiful young lady filling every room,
with personality, sunshine and perfume.

These were the days where she tested me most.
Yet these were also the days that brought us even closer.
My baby grew up.

However it was becoming clear,
that for her the nest was getting small.
The sights and sounds of far away places were luring her away.
It was only a matter of time.

We looked on helpless as we watched her dreaming.
A sickness and dread inside my head.
Waiting for the announcement she was going.
Yet on other days I could smile proudly,
I had done my job, she was ready.

And so it came.
in what seemed like moments after telling us
the destination of her dreams,
she spread her wings.
She was gone.
Her room now empty, her perfume lingering on awhile.

And just like many mothers before me,
I am left in my empty nest,
The joy, fears, frustrations, pride, anger and exhaustion,
that have gone into the past twenty one years.
So many emotions sometimes changing in a moment.
But always one constant.

So tonight as I write this I can tell you,
I feel just two of those.
One is obviously love.
And the other grief.
Together I think they perfectly sum up the journey that is parenthood.

To read about other journeys go to : http://dailypost.wordpress.com/2013/05/26/daily-prompt-journey/

photo credit: chrismar via photopin cc

photo credit: Fountain_Head via photopin cc

33 thoughts on “Empty nest.

  1. This was so touching… From reading what you wrote, it’s almost overwhelming all over again! When our children are born, it’s not about our life anymore, it all wraps around that sweet little creature. I love your writings.

    1. Thanks a million. She is only gone a few hours so the emotion is quite raw. I wasn’t going to post but then I saw the daily prompt and writing this has helped. They turn our worlds upside down but most importantly…. they turn our worlds!

      1. Before I had children I drove faster than I should have and took chances like working as a night guard carrying a 357 magnum at new construction. After kids all that changed, at least for a while. I am disabled now but still have plans that some might say are a little risky. I would like to think that you and I are not only different after children, but better. 🙂

        1. Oh definitely. You are so right. I have learned so much about myself through parenting and also the journey here has shaped me. Great point… but I still miss her! 🙂

  2. Always remember, although she has found her wings and flown to a distant place, she knows where she can come back to…and she will! Hugs, dear friend, it’s always painful to wave goodbye but your world will still turn and hers will grow!

    1. Thanks, you will have great days ahead, just as I have had and continue to have with my other children. It’s the morning after over here and I do feel a bit better, just flat. It’s the nature of things and I am of course thrilled for her also. Enjoy your little ones.

  3. Wonderful piece as usual! And I can relate on so many levels… I just visited my 20 year old daughter who lives and attends university about 5 hours away. I love to see her thriving and taking off, but I still miss her and am sad to be home without her sweetness and warmth. I’m incredibly grateful that she still wants me to come visit her!

    1. Yes its just a different phase really. This is what we wanted for them when they were small. We were just too good at our job!

  4. Tric, that was beautifully written. Something in my tummy just did a somersault in sympathy and fear for what lies ahead…. Hope you are feeling happier today and that your flegdling has landed safely. She’ll be back, because you let her go. Hugs from one blogging mummy to another.

    1. Thank you, hugs accepted! It is the day after over here and yes I am not quite so lonely, although I have her room door closed rather than see it empty.

  5. I really love this post. So heartfelt and so real. My mother got upset with me some time back because she felt i wasnt spending enough time and when I asked her quite pointedly why she couldn’t understand I also needed my own space and time, she told me I will understand when Aly moves out some day. I guess she must have felt the same way as you did today. Something every mother goes through. *big hug*

    1. Thank you. I sat in my kitchen this morning and thought how did my mum do this with all of us? At least I still have the three others. It is the circle of life! Hugs greatly appreciated.

    1. Ah I’m much improved today thanks. She has no laptop with her so no contact for awhile. Too busy shopping in New York. I am happily sure her mother is the last thing on her mind!

  6. Be strong!!! It is sincerely obvious you did a wonderful job, for she finally felt ready to leave your “nest”. This means you did your part as a parent, now it’s time for her to do her part as an adult! 😀 Cheer up. I know not what you go through, but not too long from now I’m sure I will.

    1. Thank you so much. I am definitely not sad any more but it is lonely. I am of course delighted she has done this as travel is something I have always said I wanted them to do when they grow up. Life goes on and I can imagine her at this moment shopping her heart out!

  7. Thank you, your thoughts were conveyed so beautifully in this post. Only if we are able to feel the pain are we able to feel the love, and both require such vulnerability. We can’t have one without the other. So few really understand that. You captured it perfectly.

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