Editorial Opinion

Experiencing ‘Empty Nest Syndrome’ before the nest is even empty

So I’m officially “in my feelings.” I’m no longer “mommy” and I’m just that corny old woman who chauffeurs teenagers around town. I’m an ATM, a ‘lame’ who knows absolutely nothing about life, as my kids would try to make me believe.... and the social life I’ve given up for them... I should have been pursuing, as my friends always encouraged me to do.
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By: Ms. @NewsWitAttitude

 

So I’m officially “in my feelings.” I’m no longer “mommy” and I’m just that corny old woman who chauffeurs teenagers around town. I’m an ATM, a ‘lame’ who knows absolutely nothing about life, as my kids would try to make me believe…. and the social life I’ve given up for them… I should have possibly been pursuing more, as my friends always encouraged me to do.

What’s worse… is that my life is REALLY soaring – professionally – but in the world according to everyone under the age of 16, I’m just a chunky old lady trying to kill all the fun.

In my days, we called it “cock blocking” and damn right I am. I am a one-woman goalie in a soccer field of horny kids trying desperately to block all pregnancies, STDs and misguided sex-capades from going into the end zone of my damn life.

This world we live in is dangerous, and no matter how many “You can live with HIV if you take this pill” commercials I see, I still don’t want that to become one of my children’s battles.

So while I am —admittedly—the overprotective mom, demanding to meet the parents of my children’s friends (What’s wrong with that?), making them come in before dark and DAMN SURE not allowing them to ride alone in a car with other teen drivers, I’ve slowly pushed my kids away and they are screaming for independence that I just can’t seem to manage to let them have.

As a single mother who’ve had to fight off plenty of old “Creepy Creepersons” when I was a teen (cough cough.. certain family members’ pedophiliac boyfriends), I have always been guarded of who I let around my kids. I’ve rarely introduced them to men I’ve dated and never ever left them alone with anyone because I don’t trust the souls of some folk until they’ve weathered the test of time and my watchful eyes. My motto is that, at least for the first year, you’re not dating that person, you’re dating their representative… and so many people can hide who they are until you give them complete access to your life.

So whatever the case— I can save all my hang-ups for a psychiatrist’s couch— I have somehow become the woman who the kids are treating like the plague.

They’d rather spend time with their friends on the weekend, are not “into” our annual family vacations anymore unless they GRILL me about where it is before they DECIDE it’s considered fun (and don’t have a dime to contribute, I might add) and they close up in their rooms when they’re home with me so I won’t invade their privacy.

So what is this mom to do?

Well honey, I’m going to stop sulking and grab a part of the life I cut off while they were my innocent babies – and no, I don’t regret it because I LIVE by the motto, “BECOMING a mother is NOT hard, BEING a mother IS.”

We are parents, first and foremost, and sacrifice is part of the unconditional love we give, and get, in return. On the flip side, though, maybe NOW I will go out on more dates, maybe NOW I will go on a vacation without them and maybe NOW I’ll close myself up in my room for my own privacy (well, no, I still need to watch those little suckers…ha ha).

Or maybe I’ll just do this — STOP TAKING THINGS SO PERSONAL! They are TEENAGERS and they think they ARE smarter than everyone in the world. I’m not a corny old lady… I’m 40ish, fabulous and Texas fine, and while Stella ain’t trying to totally get her groove back… she might just get her groove on a little bit.

Teens.. bah humbug! It’s just a phase. They still need their Mama…. even if they don’t think they do.

The goal has not changed. I’m here to mold and guide them, lead them in the right direction whether they like it or not, keep them safe, teach them the ways of the world and how to be successful Black men and women.

I’ll just keep standing by closely, with my watchful eye, refreshed after coming back from my SOLO vacation continuing to live the blessed life God has allowed me to provide for my “little stinkers” who are definitely smelling themselves.

Enjoy life parents. Keep doing what you do!

 

 

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