Emily and I have been married for a couple of decades and we’ve been busy raising our four kids almost the entire time. We met in college and immediately started having little ones. I always believed that we were already poor so we might as well have our kids and be REALLY poor. We’ve been expending a great deal of energy (translation: ALL) on the four kids ever since. I’ve heard someone say that having kids is extremely close to being entrepreneurial since it is a lot like starting a company. I’ve started several companies and it is indeed like that. Ups, downs, successes, failures, good times, bad times…all that. We’ve been lucky to have many more good times than bad times. I think everyone involved would rate the experience a positive…at least most days. More to come [ballots remain open]!
Now, however, these little babies are getting all grown up and moving out leaving Mom and Dad all alone. YES! I’m kidding. I play the bad cop in the parenting relationship and I’m the one who pushes the fledglings over the edge of the nest. Fly…or else! I’m excited about the future and to see what becomes of our four kids. Emily is not excited about any of this in any way. She often comments that she wishes all the kids were young again so she could have them tag along with us on any adventure we conjure up. I miss those times too but that just isn’t how life works. It keeps moving along for better or worse. There are, hopefully, many more exciting chapters left to be written in our family’s history that will leave us with great memories as well.
When we were about to have Preston, I was excited about what life would bring. Emily and I were young and both still in college. I was also scared out of my mind because life was changing quickly. I didn’t have a clue what I was doing. For the most part, we have made it. Looking back, it has been great and everything I was worried about worked out one way or another. I feel like we are in a similar position as we speak. We are in our mid-40s and about to be empty nesters. Again, we find ourselves being young to be in this position. The kids are coming off the payroll whether THEY want to or not. Conversely, the kids are coming off the payroll whether WE want them to or not. There is a forced downsizing at Dean Manor (budget cuts, efficiency upgrades, trade disputes, recession, economic slowdown, etc.). Life rolls on and everyone is growing up and growing out. This is just how it is supposed to work but it is a big change in what we are used to. This situation again leaves me partly excited but also partly scared. Now what do we do? Will Emily and I be one of those couples eating out at Cracker Barrell that don’t speak to each other while they read their respective newspaper/book? I hope not, but we’ll see. I remain thankful for the past and excited about the future!
Emily and I are going to plan some big stuff. We are going to make it so the kids can join us whenever they can. We are also going to be the most bad @$$ grandparents this earth has ever seen!