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The empty nest years bring priceless perks on the back side of letting go

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Mommas, this was the text I got from my 24 yo daughter yesterday 🤙 and I laugh at my response which at first is an attempt to play cool and filter my excitement with a casual ‘yes I could do that,’ only to be followed by an enthusiastic ‘let me pack!’ because it’s impossible for a momma to hold in her giddiness over such an opportunity. I was out the door in 6 minutes flat. For real. 🏎

A big kid asking if you want to have a sleepover is one of those holy moments of the empty nest season when you realize the fullness of motherhood continues even after your kiddos find their wings—a fullness beyond anything your momma heart could conjure up while grieving their departure.

Spending time with our adult kids is pretty much otherworldly. Seeing them in their element, hearing their perspectives on the world, and observing them thrive as independent beings does something for the soul. It’s a healing that cascades through our bodies, freeing us from the emotional burden sticking to our insides from years of unnecessary worry.

The other thing about the newfound connection is it’s just plain fun. Like epic fun because the relationship at this stage is a deep friendship where both of us have removed our masks, making way for our authentic selves to spill out over one another. It’s amazing what happens when two souls connected by heartstrings truly collide.

Every moment of carefree timelessness with our big kids also softens the painful memories from years of not seeing eye-to-eye and stepping on each other’s egos during the teen years, making it easier to let go of the guilt, regret, and doubt we’ve hung on to for far too long.

So, mommas, if you are gingerly walking into this season wondering if you’ll ever get over the ache of letting go, hold on for the ride. These years will capture your heart in new and profound ways as you realize how many priceless perks there are on the empty side of the nest.

And did I mention we shoved a pizza, half a blueberry pie, and ice cream bars into our faces to top off a night of insane laughter, cards, music, philosophizing, and straight up nonsense? Well we did, and it was pure magic.

while you live, shine ✨


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