chronicle of an empty nest foretold

Off they went, both my little people, for a week. A week of Irish dancing and carrying on with others from different parts of Europe, in Poland. Parents and grandparents scoured social media for updates from the festival or dancers. It’s entirely possible that one of us actually waved with excitement at a screen on seeing a pic with daughters in it. (Technology, eh?)

pier jumping not dancing

And back in Belfast we looked at each other, and around us, a bit like meerkats. Is this what the rest of the world is like? What do people do with their days?

We had adventures, doing things we don’t normally get a chance to do. There were cocktails, afternoon tea and a fancy lunch or two. We explored Parliament buildings, listened to music in a pub, and went to a different beach. We watched a box set, read multiple novels and had boring financial conversations with someone who understands these things. The house stayed tidy. There were no random explosions of energy or noise. No complex taxi arrangements negotiated with known unknowns via snap chat. No daytime TV. All was calm. Ordered.

We’ve had fun, of course. But yet…

Half of us are missing. Jake keeps having a sniff about to figure out where they’ve gone. We haven’t laughed as much. I remember now that watching soap operas is meant to be a social activity. My arms have ached with the empty. I didn’t start counting down the days until they were half way through; now I’m at hours. They’re coming home today, and I’m very excited.

A week, people. It’s only a week. They’ll be grown up in the blink of an eye, and we’ll all be laughing at my excitement of today.

This evening chaos, noise, squabbling and laundry return in full force. My arms and my heart will be overflowing.

(Expect the next post to be grumbling about chaos, noise, squabbling, laundry and teenage attitude.)

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4 thoughts on “chronicle of an empty nest foretold”

  1. I’m so glad you shared about the roller coaster of emotions, Fiona. I think it’s something the majority of parents experience. We look forward to a little separation (or maybe a lot) and then when we have it, we miss them terribly. Even the noise and squabbling fills our days with something quite incomparable. And you’re absolutely right about how quickly this time passes. I am glad you had a good time while they were away, and it is probably a really good sign that you are eager for their return. Wouldn’t that be a little scary if you didn’t feel that way? 🙂 I hope they had a wonderful time as well!

  2. A staycation for a week without the kids sounds fabulous to me Fiona! (Can you tell I’m looking forward to the end of the school holidays?) I’m glad you enjoyed it, but I do understand it must have been very odd indeed…..and that after a few days you’d be ready for the return on mayhem…. Still jealous though. 😊

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