Back To School: Transitioning When the Little Nest is Empty



Webster defines transition as movement, passage, or change from one position, state, stage, subject, concept, etc., to another; change. I would define it as the state that I am in now. I also might add that for me it comes with a little nervousness, anxiety and a compelling need to let go when I really want to hang on.

Change. You either love it or hate it, but one thing is necessary to keep life moving and relevant. And that one thing my friends, is change.

I knew this time of transition that I am currently in would come. My littlest just started Kindergarten last week. Cue the waterworks. The truth is they haven’t really stopped yet and while that might seem dramatic and crazy to some, it’s just where I am. I like to keep it real and I would be lying if I stated anything otherwise.

My tears obviously haven’t affected her. This morning she insisted that she walk in to the school building all by herself. My son, who is in first grade, NEVER asked to be dropped off last year.

Quinley Kindergarten One

So I suppose that her eagerness to RUN FAR AWAY from me and into the independence that she’s been waiting for just cut my heart a little. Her teacher is a friend of mine and as I was talking to her (very briefly I might add), Quinley kept saying rather loudly, “BYE mom!” As if to say, “Please get out of here. I am ready for you to go now already.”

Quinley Kindergarten two

So I came home. I folded laundry. I put it away. Emptied the dishwasher and reloaded it again. I answered emails, made another pot of coffee and went for a walk. And then I looked at the clock and it was 9:30am. Obviously, I’ve got some figuring-out-of-situations to do. Big smile.

Let me give a little background here and just say that before I had littles I was a full time R.N. I loved it. I actually still work a little and I am very grateful for my job. I believe in hard work, paying bills, etc. For me though, the choice was obvious that after two children in less than a year and a half I would stay at home for the majority of their childhood. My husbands job situation allowed it and we thought that was the best choice for our family.

It would seem that this would be a super time for me to go back to full time status except for a few facts. If you’ve read my other posts you know that we are foster parents. If anyone ever parented biological children, you should try fostering some…it is a full time job. I don’t say that with any ill feelings at all – I say that because I want to be fully available to children in our home. It is my great pleasure to do so.

Blaring in the headlights right now though is the obvious; times are a changin’. I’m going out on a limb here and guessing that somewhere out there in this town there are a few more mamas like me. You’ve kissed your last little mop of blonde curls goodbye and walked back into the house and said to yourself through the tears, “Now what?” I’m right there with you ladies and here’s what we’re going to do. We’re going to keep moving forward and we’re going to be relevant. The last thing I ever want to become is the lady who shops at Target too much.

I tell this to my family and they laugh at me but I’m dead serious. What I mean by that statement is that I don’t want to become idle. Make sense? For all of us that’s going to mean something different. Some of you may go back to work. To others who are already there, the choice is clear and your days are already so busy you sometimes don’t know if you’re coming or going. Bless you, dear one.

The number one thing to do in transition is be flexible. Where you go in the future may be a bit different from where you came from, but don’t worry. New doors and opportunities come as they’re meant to and you just have to trust and go with it. Keep moving, walk through that door and don’t be afraid.

Whatever you do and wherever you go don’t ever forget to REACH OUT. This has been huge for me. Even in the midst of transition when I am not sure where my next move will take me, I never have to look very far to find someone that needs a kind smile or a kind word or deed. It happened just today actually. I came in contact with two people who were struggling and before I ever got my morning really started there were two huge opportunities to help others. So that’s what I’m working on today. All of that came about just by talking to someone, stopping to ask them how they are doing and bam! An opportunity is laid in my lap.

So what’s next for me? I don’t really know the answer to that yet. But I do know that whatever it is, it will be good. Phillipians 1:6 Being confident in this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

I might have transitioned to another phase of motherhood, but I am not complete yet!


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