Editor's Note: Today we bring you another team post! This time, it's from Debbie Valley, and you can follow her on Twitter @DebVal2008!!
No one prepared me for this. My son spent three days at a friend’s house last week. This wasn’t the first sleep over he’s been on. You see he is my youngest and is 17. I woke up in my house and was completely alone. My husband was at work and my oldest two are away at school. I didn’t like it at all. Strange as it is, I really like my kids most of the time. Everyone talks about what it’s going to be like when you have a baby but no one talks about what it’s like to have an empty house. Part of it might be that in my circle of friends there are only two of us in this situation. We are the ‘pioneers’ of this new world. I’d like to stop right now and clarify that I’m not that old. I’m only old enough to have a 22, 19, and 17 year old and not a day older.
I think I have Pre-Empty Nest Syndrome. I had a sneak peek at it and I can loudly proclaim that it isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. I’ve spent the last 11 years of my life homeschooling our boys. I saw their faces every morning and gave them hugs every night. Last fall our middle son left for welding school, four months later our oldest transferred to a university across the state. I don’t think a mother is wired to have two children leave that fast. My youngest is being recruited to play tennis for schools that are far away. I selfishly cringe at the thought of him leaving me too.
God has blessed me with three amazing sons. I’m immensely proud of each of their accomplishments and who they are as young men. They are a huge part of my identity. I’ll always be their mom but the definition of mom is changing. It’s a phone call instead of a knock on my bedroom door when they have something to share. There’s no more piling in our bed to watch a movie. There’s no more telling them to quiet down at night. There’s no more telling them to get their school work done. I always joked that I was raising my boys to move out. I guess the joke is on me.