Sunday, November 11, 2007

The just keeps on getting better

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 Brandon is still much too young to even fly yet, thank goodness. The great-grandchildren will have to grow up VERY FAST if they are ever going to cause us any distress at all.

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.


JunieRose2005 said...

oh my-oh my-Sandy- You are speaking right from my heart! It's amazing that we have exactly the same feelings and understanding of this situation.

We are at the exact same spot in our grandchildren's flight as you are!

I too, was taken completely by surprise when the grands drifted out into the world.

I'm sure ppl who are not so close to their grands don't experience this to the degree that ones very close do!

...It's the price of loving and being involved...but it's worth it!!

I have written about this very same thing on my blog.


Tomas Dennis said...

We like everyone else have felt the same way. My son like myself has moved on and on from place to place until finally settling in San Diego. Our daughter never moved to far from home so it seems that she is always nearby. I do miss the movement of children and young adults from earlier days but for me it was not to hard since I worked strange hours and was never home.

Jamie Dawn said...

What a heartfelt, wonderful post.
I am approaching the time when my kids will be leaving the nest. My oldest will start her junior year of college in the fall and my son just graduated high school. I need to post about his graduating, but we have not received the official diploma yet. Both my kids were home schooled from junior high school age until they graduated high school.
I can relate to your deep family connection. There is nothing more important in life than that.
Granny Annie (on my blogroll) recently wrote a post about missing time with her grandkids.
These posts just show how much you ladies love your families. You've poured your lives into them, and you miss them when they are away. You are also overjoyed when they return and renew a closer relationship with you.

Rachel said...

I'm so glad Sandy!! You have such a lovely family!! It wonderful that they appreciate their grandparents. Great post dear friend!!

Susie said...

What a touching post Sandy! At the risk of sounding somewhat naive, I just never even let myself think that my precious grands wouldn't always be right here. Now, I'm kinda worrying!

LZ Blogger said...

Sandy – “Empty nester grandparents’ syndrome”? Now I have that to worry about too? Oh well... at least we'll have our memories? Is that the “short term” or “long term” memory that GOES first? Oh… I can't remember! ~ jb///

T*mmy said...

Argggg...don't tell me I'll have to go through this again with the Grands??!?? is good to know that just like everything else "this too shall pass".

Have a great time!