Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Empty Nest Part 1

That time God asked me to …
                                               Put down the idol of motherhood.

Maybe I missed all the discussions about empty nest before I headed into this new territory. Or could it be we simply don’t discuss it very much?

Since venturing into these new waters I’ve asked for advice but most people either just tell me to be happy about it or keep busy so I don’t have to deal with it.

Can I be real honest for a minute? I did NOT handle it real well in the beginning. My life had been filled with so many of my kids’ sports and events I felt completely isolated when it all came to end.

Don’t get me wrong, I have an amazing husband who was always there for me but for several months I walked around in a bit of a fog. Not real sure of what my identity was anymore. Can you relate?

Yes, I’ll always be a mom but my job in that role had taken such a drastic turn I wasn’t sure what to do next.

So, how did I handle this new season of life?

I dove deep into writing and I do believe it helped me process a lot. But…writing can be very lonely. There is an amazing network of support out there in the cyber world but it’s different than face to face.

It’s a BIG switch from having kids who need you.

Trusting that God loves my sons even more than I do was a bit of lip service from me for years. I WANTED to believe it. I sure told myself I believed it. I’m sure I shared with others I believed it. It was just hard to completely believe it.

Seriously God, can’t you see how much I love my kids down here?
How could anyone, including God, love them as much as I do? They’re my life.

Oh crud, there it was!! God revealed to me some hard truth that wasn’t fun to hear but needed light brought to it. I had placed my role as a mother above my identity as a child of God. My kids were truly my life. Everything, including God, took a back seat to them. Ouch!

I don’t really remember when it happened but somehow it just slipped in quietly when I wasn’t looking. The martyrdom of motherhood.

I wasn’t one of those women who dreamed of being a mom growing up. There were no real plans to go down that road honestly. I had big plans for my life and men and children simply weren’t in those plans.
Want to hear God laugh…tell Him your plans!

Not only did I end up marrying and having kids, I did it fairly young. Shortly after getting married I was told I wouldn’t be able to have kids. So, when my role in life did shift I dove in headfirst.

My whole world was my little family. As they grew older and the time grew closer for them to leave the nest I held on even tighter. Fear settled in big time! Am I alone in this?

Often we don’t recognize fear and anxiety when we’re in the middle of it. We can feel twinges of panic and try to dismiss them as just part of life. How often do we try to rationalize our fears and worries away? Or just go through life with emotional blinders on in a futile attempt at not dealing with yet again another scary change.

Now that we have discussed the feelings as empty nest approaches, join me in the next post as we explore the different ways to make this transition easier.

I'm sharing this post with several other blogger's at these Faith Linkups. I encourage you to check them out. If this post resonates with you and feel it would help others please feel free to share. Easy to share buttons below. ~Laura~


  1. Hello Laura, Thank you for sharing your heart with us. I totally relate to this post. Because it's very easy for me to push God aside in my daily pursuit and somewhat fear that He doesn't really understand or want that thing as much as I do. Often times I God has asked me to let go, put down the idols and let Him be in charge. But in a matter of weeks I see myself falling flat and going all over.

    I am encouraged that we are not alone in our struggles and have the opportunity to learn from the stories and experiences of others.

    Linked behind you at Intentional Tuesdays and Jennifer Luke's Tell His Story Linkups.
    Glad to meet you Laura.
    Have a great week.

    1. So glad you stopped by Grace! I agree it's so encouraging to hear from others when we're not alone in our struggles. Bless you!

  2. Laura - so true - we often don't recognize fear and anxiety when we are in the midst of it.. Thank you for sharing your story with us today at #RaRaLinkup where we are neighbors... I have 2 grown adult children, but one of the 2 is still living at home while she finshes her last 2 years of college, but I wasn't sure how I was going to handle when my son moved away and got his first job after graduating college.. my mom didn't handle the empty nesting thing very well when my sister and I left and I wanted my experience to be different, but I wasn't sure - I have to say, I handled it better than expected and now that my son lives in another state, while he isn't home, he calls and we talk more than he did when he lived under the same rood. This message about empty nests is so good and more people need to be prepared, thanks

    1. Debbie, it's amazing you could see and handle the transition well. Thank God we can still connect with our adult kids even if it's in a new way. Blessings!

  3. I just packed off 2 of my 4 kids and the change in the dynamic of the house is huge for me. I have a couple more years with the last 2 before they head out on their own, but I can totally relate. Being a homeschooling mom, it's hard to have 3/4 of the year consumed with books, projects, assignments, etc and then suddenly it be gone. just cutting it down by half has made me wonder what it will be like once the 25 years of homeschooling is over. I'll look forward to your next post.

    1. I so get it Karen! I homeschooled my boys before high school and sending them off to public school again as teens was an adjustment as well. Change can be scary but I'm so grateful God walks through every new phase with us. Blessings to you!

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  5. Hi, Laura. You are not alone! I thought I was mentally prepared, but as the nest gets more and more empty I find myself wandering through the day wondering what I'm supposed to be doing. Looking forward to your next post. :-)

    1. Calista, I'm hoping you'll check out the followup blog when it publishes this week. (9/20/16)
      I'm finding relationships are always changing and growing. This includes my relationship with Christ. Having more time has allowed for time to grow there as well. Blessings friend!

  6. It is a strange time, to transition from kids in the house to kids out to college and then home again. To daughters getting married and now 2 grandsons. I too felt a bit out of sorts. It's been a slow shift to a new season in life.

    Today I enjoy waiting on the Lord to see what my day brings, what He wants me involved with or what new thing my husband and I will try next. I am learning to trust God's plan on a deeper level.

    I look forward to your next blog!

    1. Laura, I hope you were able to read the second part to this post. It's definitely an opportunity to trust the Lord even more now.