Sometimes just as parents get that empty nest feeling, well so do grandparents when the grandchildren reach those late teen years. They seem to disappear for awhile while making that difficult adjustment to adulthood. They leave you behind like discarded old news and enter the world of the working. They seem much too busy to even stop by for a visit, much less to call. You wonder as grandparents if they will even take notice if you should die suddenly or will they just one day say, “What happened to Grandma…I haven’t seen her lately.” Then someone will tell them the sad news…that you died last year when they weren’t looking.
I never thought I’d be suffering once again from that empty nest syndrome, as I did when my own children flew off on their own, to discover the world. I thought that this was the end of that feeling, once they returned to find me a much wiser person than the one they left behind. I was relieved to know that they were back, and that I no longer felt unwanted and unloved. This renewed joy of being an important part of my children’s lives continued well into the births of my grandchildren and into my grandchildren’s late teen years. Then with a vengeance it happened again, but this time I was caught off guard. No one prepared me, or did I ever hear anyone speak of the ‘empty nest grandparent’s syndrome.’ Who would have thought that you would have to go through it once again. Wasn’t the heartache of the first time enough for one lifetime??
Thank God, the empty nest didn’t stay empty for long this time and I guess it was because my own three children were just 3 years apart…That’s three years age difference between my oldest child to my youngest…they were stair-steps. So it seemed rather sudden and abrupt. I had very little cushioning between the times each of my children flew the coup. They seem to have all flown off together. The grandchildren, on the other hand, are spread out in years and there are much more of them because of our blended family…lots of them and
This year I have felt such a great weight lifted off my shoulders as the grandchildren are making their way back into our lives once again. They have gone out into the world, found out what it takes to survive and have returned victorious and with a renewed sense of family. One by one they are finding their way back to grandma & papaw’s house. Our house is once again filled with laughter as we play games with our young adults on their days off or we are invited to dine out with them. They drop in unannounced or call with questions just as they did before. There's no more waiting to see them only on special holidays or birthdays. Their return has truly been a blessing and one that I will cherish forever, just as I cherished their parents return long ago.