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The empty nest syndrome is supposed to be a feeling of grief and loneliness, which parents feel at such times. But is that so? Should it be so?
An empty nester as the meaning goes is a parent whose children are grown up and have left home.
I don’t think so. As I understand, life has different stages. Each stage has a purpose and a time limit. Once the stage is over and time is up, one has to move on to the next one and learn how to deal with it. Every stage is there to teach us something new, something different. We should be ready; we should be eager to learn from it.
Life is an evolution, and as we live life, we have to grow and evolve. Each stage presents itself to us when we are ready to handle it. The empty nest stage comes when we no longer have the physical ability, the bandwidth to deal with young children and their shenanigans. But we do have a lot of time at our disposal which we can if we wish to put to use.
What stops us from doing that? Is it a lack of opportunity or a lack of willingness or just plain and simple lethargy. Or wait a minute, is it a sympathy gaining exercise? We want to indulge in self-pity and need an audience!
To my mind, this stage of life can be as productive as any other stage. Parents can use the time to focus more on their work, pick up a hobby, revisit their interests. I mean they can do just about anything. It isn’t as though they are too old for any of that. It is the right age, coupled with maturity and experience to spot chances and take them. With children around the priority is and should be on them, their school, their classes, their food, their illnesses. It takes a lot out of anyone to deal with that.
There is constantly running around and figuring things out. But at that stage, one is younger and so more able to do that. By the time they leave and the so-called syndrome sets in one is no longer that young. So, therefore, now comes the time to focus on oneself. Parents at this stage can relax physically and be there for themselves and each other.
So all you empty nesters, use this time to discover yourself, to reinvent yourself. Life is giving you a chance, just go grab it!
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Aside from being an educationist teaching at the university level for the last 28 years,
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