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Motherhood after Children Leave

 

Motherhood does not end when children leave the nest. But it’s “form,” or the way it lives inside us, changes.

One way of “being” must end, and this takes time.  It is helpful to look ahead, at the woman we want to be years down the road. Children will always have a relationship with their mother, even if it is only in their head.  They will also come home, as young adults, and also (hard to imagine) as parents themselves.

It is absolutely possible to shape the new woman we wish to be. It is deeply empowering and rejuvenating to do so intentionally. It takes a mother time to learn to listen to herself, rather than to her family.  When all the children leave, this growth process can accelerate if nurtured with intention and awareness.  Such an intentional focus leads to a huge shift within: we learn to listen in newly deep ways to our desires, hurts, triumphs and fears.

Learning how to honor this evolutionary shift, and then to act upon it, is the foundation for transitioning out of the old way of being.  When the time feels right, this entire process is an organic one, full of discovery, shaky steps, and much joy.

We have earned it.