Then there were two.

Be careful what you wish for. Today I am sitting at my laptop, catching up on reading and commenting, and taking a bit of time to ponder a new story I hope to write for a competition. This is the day of my dreams, something often wished for over many years.

Me time.photo credit: jev55 via photopin cc

Yet it’s not quite as amazing as I thought it would be.

Earlier this morning the house was filled with activity, as the eldest two prepared to return to college. “Who robbed my black boots?” (her sister), “Where is my navy top?” (in her sister’s room), “Has anyone seen my black handbag?” (try your sister). The tumble drier was permanently on, and Β just before they were due to leave I inquired if my daughter wanted to bring any of the large bundle of clothes that had suddenly appeared on the table, with her. “Oh yes, they’re for ironing”, (which I assume meant, for ironing by you Mom). I obliged and added them to the huge pile of clothes next to her two full suitcases.

My son on the other hand is obviously not going to change his clothes at all! He has a very small case of ‘almost dry’ clothes. His schedule seems to have been so busy over Christmas and January that he had no time to do any washing until yesterday and today. He also does not seem to need any food, except the selection box we gave him, that was left over from Christmas.

We shared a final noisy lunch in which the four siblings joked with each other, and then the car was loaded up. They put on their coats (as the heating in my daughters car is broken) and drove out the gate, skid marks behind them, such was their haste to return to college life.

In their aftermath there is a silence. A deafening silence.photo credit: Klifton via photopin cc

While my children were growing up I couldn’t even imagine this day. We used to speak of it together, my husband and I, but it was always too far in the distance. What would it be like to not have a full house of noise and fun? What would it be like to sit and read during an afternoon? We dreamed of it, and thought of all we would do, or better again what we would not do!

That day has come, and now I know.

Sitting doing as I please I can hear my missing children in the silence. I hear all that is not happening. No chat in the hall between them. No loud music from their bedrooms. No laughter in the distance or conversations with friends on their phones. The two who are left are oblivious, happy to have unfettered access to their eldest sisters clothes once more. Accepting of the change.

It will take me a little longer I’m afraid. In the meantime, it is an excellent week to come for dinner, as I forget daily we are now four and not six.

photo credit: jev55 via photopin cc

photo credit: Klifton via photopin cc

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16 thoughts on “Then there were two.

  1. It is a haunting feeling. Finally you have ME time and spend most of the day thinking about how quiet and lonely it is. Silence is deafening sometime. πŸ˜‰

      1. Hardly, Tric. Your children will always be your children, and your mothering will complexly move to the next stage. I believe it is more difficult than when they are toddlers!

  2. I feel like that when the girls go back to school after holidays wishing them away then wanting them back, luckily they are only gone for a morning and I still have many noisy years ahead

    1. It is definitely not dissimilar sara. The difference is your girls will run into your arms after school. Mine forget to text that they have arrived safely! πŸ™‚

  3. it’s always a bit bittersweet. even with my daughters being older, after we’ve all be together for a while again, it’s hard when some of them have to go their way after. )

  4. Ah, I do so sympathize. Mine have been gone for almost 5 years now, and I still hear the echo of their voices.
    But you know what? Paul and I just spent two whole days in our cozy little house. Reading, relaxing, eating casually. Its really wonderful, although I’d trade it all in a heartbeat for one more chance to have my little children around me again.

  5. I was one of those mom’s who hated for summer to be over and celebrated when school was out. I couldn’t get enough of my sons and their friends – the noise, the door slamming, the poking each other, the laughter, shoes and school bags all over the place, and the refrigerator door constantly open. I always wanted to slow time down so I could have them a bit longer. It has been 13 years since my youngest went off to college and I still haven’t adjusted to the silence. I would love to have those days back, but I’d want to include my daughters-in-law, and grandchildren – the more the merrier! BTW – cooking for two isn’t the same as cooking for a crowd. I’d rather cook for the crowd.

    1. I think a time will come when hopefully the house fills once more with ‘in laws’ and grandchildren. It sounds like you are just a bit ahead of me.
      In some ways I look forward to more peace but like you, I remember those noisy days with great fondness, and am in no hurry for my last two to move.
      Thanks for giving me a view into the future.

  6. What an eloquent and bitter-sweet description… I’m sending you big hugs, girl. Bigfoot is coming back from Uni for the weekend and I’m pathetically excited. He knows it, and he doesn’t mind being squished whilst he’s here by a mummy who needs to soak up his presence. Just to keep me in the real world, he brings me back all his washing.

    1. Ooohhh I would love to squish my fella tonight.
      It is wonderful to know they still enjoy coming home, even if it is with the washing. Enjoy the weekend.

  7. My daughter was away for a sleep-over for one evening last weekend and the house seemed so so quiet. Her older brother loved the peace and quiet though!

    1. Yes even one makes a difference. They will be coming home for this weekend and the house will be buzzing. I love it.
      Time is marching on for you, is it this year or was it last Sept you lost one to secondary school?

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