Parent Emeritus Life; Life Does Go On Once the Kids Are Grown

Discussion in 'Parent Emeritus' started by TheyAreLegallyAdultsNow, Apr 22, 2012.

  1. husband and I had the pleasure of visiting my parents' generation at a gated retirement community. The residents in that community have been living "empty nest" style for literally decades.

    My point is life goes on LONG after our kids get an adult life of their own.

    I'd love to hear what you're looking forward to participating in, accomplishing, acheiving during your stage of life that is longer than infancy, longer than early childhood, teen years, child rearing years.... What have you always wanted to do?

    I'm having fun volunteering to teach English as a Second Language.

    I've had the itch to create art forever. Never had the time. Time doesn't feel more in abundance these days... But I have the feeling I'd gladly swap the hours I spend stressing over our difficult children for time to create something beautiful!

    How about you?

    School is coming to an end. Many communities offer fun summer courses. Boating, swimming, art, languages... What would you LOVE to try?

    I encourage you to contact your city, county community centers, and/or local colleges to explore what's available for you to enrich the longest season of your life!!!!!

    Please tell me, what do you want to do?
  2. Travel, travel, travel!!! I want to cruise and go on tours and discover little shops in cool little towns off the beaten path. husband and I want to travel these 2 great countries of ours on the Harley with the wind blowing through our hair and rock and roll playing on the stereo. And learn to line dance! :)

    But I"m not there yet. Still have easy child daughter at home. And of course my difficult child who is not 18 (is only 16 but it's legal for him to leave home at that age where we live) but has left home may decide to come back at some point although at this point it doesn't look good.

    Of course we can still do some traveling now and I could learn to line dance although the only place I know that teaches it is the senior's centre and I'm not there yet either. :)

    It was fun to think about though! I'm looking forward to reading others posts.
  3. keista

    keista New Member

    I'm still so, so far away from my "rest of my life" dreams, but I cannot wait to be able to just pick up and go at a moment's notice. Just up and go visit friends or family just because the mood struck me. Drive 5 hours for dinner with a friend. Head out to the theater or a concert because I "just found out" and tickets are available. Oh, I so miss the spontaneity I had before I had 3 children.
  4. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    When the boys were young and pre-my disabilities setting in, Tony and I dreamed about traveling the country with a travel trailer hooked behind our truck. The idea was he could work just about anywhere and I could stay home in the trailer. At nights and on weekends we would explore the areas and when we got bored we would move on. grew up and two didnt move on. We also took on my mom for awhile and with me being so sick, it just isnt possible. My doctors are here and I cant just replace them at will.

    Now I guess our dreams are more along the lines of watching the grandkids. Until Keyana moved away I lived my life through her. She was my world. I am sorta on pause right now waiting for her to come home.
  5. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Since we are older and SO is retired and I work part time, we have begun the winding down process. We're recognizing the preciousness of each day as the days fly by and we are aware of the shortness of life. Having time, being healthy, being active and both of us having a real zest for life, we try to find humor, fun and connection each and every day. We travel as often as we can now, usually two long trips a year with weekend trips in the middle. Our longer range plan, after our granddaughter goes to college is to move to the island of Kauai. As Wecometowitzend said, travel, travel, travel. I've done a good deal of traveling but there are so many interesting places left to experience. Since I've had so much of my time devoted to the care of others, just having time to myself is a luxury. I love waking up and having leisurely mornings with nowhere to go, then going to the gym or walking/hiking, wandering around with SO with no agenda, no list, no responsibility at all! SO and I are very compatible and we have a lot of fun together, so doing anything with him is fun for me. Three of my best friends still live on the east coast, so I love visiting them and hacking around New York City. I love to write and have most of my life, and we're creating a room upstairs which will be a room for me to write. The process of creating the room is fun too. I like to decorate, to paint, to read, to write, to communicate, to laugh, to hike at the beach and in the woods, there's never a shortage of fun things to do! I make every attempt to adhere to the theory that if I'm above ground, it's a great day!
  6. Ah yes!! When I ask my father in law how he is today he'll say "Well, I'm on the green side of the grass!!" LOL
  7. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    RE...I think if I was able to have my granddaughter with me, I would be a happy woman for the rest of my natural life. This is the oldest one I am speaking of. I have to explain somewhat. I truly thought that when my boys were grown that they would fly for the door and never look back. I thought I hated kids my entire life and never thought I would like having grandchildren. When I learned Cory was going to have a baby, I was furious. I didnt want to have anything to do with her. Slowly after I found out that the baby was going to be a girl I started to get a bit more interest but still I held my ground that I wanted nothing to do with the baby when she first came home. But slowly that little girl grabbed a hold of my heart and she never let go. I never dreamed I could fall in love that way.
  8. recoveringenabler

    recoveringenabler Well-Known Member Staff Member

    Janet, I hear you. My granddaughter was born when I was in Florida with my Mom for awhile, so after seeing her right after her birth, I didn't see her again until she was 5 months old when she and my daughter flew to Florida to hang out with us. My daughter told me she was at the age where she was shy or afraid of people she didn't know, someone outside of the family she saw daily, so to prepare myself for her to not be too friendly towards me. They got off the plane and my granddaughter was in a little baby seat. My daughter put her down and I bent down and smiled at her and she looked at me and cracked up. I picked her up and she kept looking at me and giggling and giggling. My daughter told me she had never done that before. And, for the couple of weeks we were all together, there were many times she would look at me with that wonderful baby laugh and just crack up!!! Ever since that moment, she and I have had that special connection. I really can't explain it, it's different then with my own kid, I guess it's that intangible connection that is so powerful, a powerful love. I know exactly how you feel.
  9. Hound dog

    Hound dog Nana's are Beautiful

    My kids are grown and are doing fine for the most part. Maybe Travis will decide he wants an apartment once he gets his disability, who knows? But right now I'm just surviving. It doesn't leave a whole lot of room for luxury activities.

    I love to draw and paint, and probably (hopefully) at some point I'll be able to take it up again. I have a long time friend who decided to give painting a whirl......turned out she has a knack for it. I normally don't care for abstract art, but hers I just just clicks with me. And she has a blast doing it.

    For most of my life I dreamed of going to Disney World. My goal was to ride the Dumbo ride. lol But now? Not so much. Even with the grandkids.

    husband and I had planned on visiting a few places.......some historic places. Planned to pack up the car and just camp where ever we went. But that won't be happening. So I don't know if I'll ever do that now or not. Not long before his heart attack we'd planned to take a short cruise. (a miracle as I loath boats) Without him, it's not appealing.

    So I guess I'm still at the "figuring out" what I might want to do stage, once I get past just plain surviving.
  10. CrazyinVA

    CrazyinVA Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I am loving my empty nest (again). I'm trying to travel as much as I can, and I run two social groups that keep me busy (one for movie and theater fans, one for craft beer fans). I enjoy going out to dinner with friends and having them over for game nights or cookouts when the weather's nice. I also go to concerts as often as I can, live music has always been one of my passions (and half the time I'm the oldest person there lol). I bought season tickets to a community theater, and a lecture series here (speakers include Steven Spielberg and Gabrielle Giffords). It's just so nice to be able to do these things now, things I'd looked at for years but could never afford or find time for. It always seemed like if I tried to plan something, some kid crisis would get in the way. Inevitable crises will still happen occasionally, but I no longer feel the need to drop everything for them.

    I went from college to marriage to parenthood to single parenthood, so I never got a chance to live alone. I think that's why I love it so much now. I should probably slow down, actually, but I can't yet :) Feel like I have a lot of lost time to make up for or something. In short, life is good... the only thing that might make it better would be to find someone to date again ... but I'm in no rush for that.
  11. Tiredof33

    Tiredof33 Active Member

    I enjoy not having to get up at a certain time! I have a lot of hobbies that keep me busy, and I try very hard to go to the gym each day except weekends. During the summer I look forward to 'putting up' fresh veggies. Anyone remember that phrase lol??

    I chair our local blood drive and have met many of our town's people. One lady vounteers at our City Hall and we exchange plant cuttings, she loves gardening as much as I do!

    I have passed the teaching certs and tried subing to see how I liked it, but once I got out of the politics of the workforce I didn't want to go back. Hubby works a few days a week, but it is when he wants too, so we are free to go to long lunches. We have travled and worked at Disney World for 3 years after our retirement, the grands loved us lol!

    Living in a small town described as 'sleepy' by a larger city I don't have the opportunity to take classes except online. Our quilting forum meets each October for a retreat in the mountains, really, really, looking forward to that!!!!

    My cousin is really sad over her empty nest and to me she is just plain nuts lol!!! There are so many things I look forward to doing.
  12. Nomad

    Nomad Guest

    What lovely comments, post and thread. Really liked what you said here.
    "My point is life goes on LONG after our kids get an adult life of their own."
    I've taken classes, am looking to do some volunteering at our local school, husband and I like to moves on and I'm doing my very best to make to most out of it. Blessings to you and yours.
  13. I'm smiling really wide as I read all the wonderful aspirations here. I want to do it ALL. Travel, garden, learn to play the guitar, dabble in various art media.

    You're all such a delightful group of concerned parents. It's a pleasure to get to know you on these boards!
  14. DammitJanet

    DammitJanet Well-Known Member Staff Member

    I am a bit nostalgic reading all this. I would love to look forward to these things but my goal right now is to make it till June when Keyana comes home and then hopefully I can make it through the summer. Tony and I want to take her to Great Wolf Lodge to the indoor water park. I guess that means Cory, Mandy and McKenzie come too. NP. The rooms are great and the package is for 4 adults and I am sure a baby is free and a 6 year old wont be too much more. Besides Mandy and Cory can do all the real water stuff while Papa and Grandma watch the baby in the shallow

    Then I dont know how much longer I can hang on after she leaves. This pain is seriously getting the better of me. There are so many things I want to do and I am not even getting out of the house to try. I cant even stand up now long enough to bring in groceries from the car and back. Tony tries getting me out to the store and I try walking but I am down by the end of 3 isles.

    My aim is for not this summer but next summer. Next summer is Disney. I will have the money. The kids will all be old enough to remember somewhat...except McKenzie and she will have pictures. I may not make it much longer than that.
  15. ThreeShadows

    ThreeShadows Quid me anxia?

    oh, Lord, Janet! Loving hugs to you, I'm sorry you're in so much pain.