My daughter is settled in Philly, looking for a job, ready to start grad school. My older son is couch-surfing in his college town, the suburban full of furniture and all his stuff, meeting with the classroom teacher he’ll student teach with in the spring and waiting until he can move into his apartment on Saturday. And my younger son is all moved in to his single room in the same dorm, on the same floor as last year, and participating in CL training until the freshmen arrive and move in.
My house is quiet again.
I can breathe.
Sometimes I feel a little guilty for how much I enjoy the quiet, but it really isn’t anything new. From the time my kids went to school all day I’ve reveled in my hours in my house, alone and quiet. I’ve learned it’s just part of who I am, how I’m made. In fact, I’ve found myself wondering lately if any studies have been done about introvert and extrovert parents and how that personality trait correlates to their transition to the empty nest stage of life.
My guess is that introvert parents embrace the quiet calmness much more quickly and happily. And if two introvert parents are married to one another, like hubby and me? Let’s just say empty nest = bliss. Not because we don’t love our kids or their chaos. It just exhausts us instead of energizes us. It always has. We were those parents who put our babies to bed at 7:00, our elementary school kids to bed at 8 or 8:30 and held off even as long as possible on the 9:00 bedtime in middle school because we each desperately needed the quiet of evening to regroup. Now we have hours of just the two of us. It’s not just lovely, it’s invigorating. It makes my days more productive.
And so I embrace my quiet house even as I eagerly anticipate each Sunday afternoon video chat catching up with our kids and hearing about their lives.
Life is good–with or without chaos!