Monday, July 10, 2017

Pre-Empty Nest Syndrome

Next Monday, Precocious Daughter will fly to New York to spend two weeks with her grandma, aunt, and cousin on her dad's side.

Two weeks.

Absolutely not ready for this empty nest
thing, thanks for asking.

Now, her aunt has very, very generously offered to drive PDaughter up and down the East Coast to visit any colleges she may be interested in. This is a fantastic opportunity, because there's no way I would be financially able to offer a similar tour around New England universities.

A tiny, petty part of me whispers that my ex-sister-in-law is well aware of that fact and happy to one-up me in this area.

But for PDaughter's sake, I happily and graciously accept this generous gift.

Anyway, PDaughter will tour seven fine universities in four states during her trip, and will also spend time in New York City (which she loves), time on the beach (ditto), and time with her dad's side of the family (ditto ditto).

It's all good.

I'll be without my kid for two weeks.

Nest, whatever.

You guys. I know damn well that in just over a year, my only offspring will begin college. And while there is a small chance that she'll choose a relatively local school, she is very very interested in attending an out of state university. Because she can turn the world on with a smile, and she damn well knows it.

She got the results of her latest AP tests a couple of days ago, and she's saved herself many dollars in tuition by testing out of English, History, Physics, and other classes.

That's awesome.

I hate like hell that in 25 years of marriage, her dad and I weren't able to save for a new washer/dryer, let alone our daughter's post-secondary education.

I hate that I allowed that to happen.

But what's done is done.

And what's coming is that my beautiful PDaughter is about to start her senior year of high school. And I want it to be magical for her, in a way that my senior year never was. And I want her to receive great news about paying for college, the way I never even sought because my parents said they would pay my way if I would simply attend.

I'm not in a position to tempt, bribe, or guilt my child.

I'm a single mom.

I chose that role, and sometimes I love it, and sometimes it sucks big old rocks.


But my sole focus right now - more than my love life, more than my stupid fucking job - is making sure my PDaughter is able to attend the university of her choosing, without becoming bankrupt.

I know she assumes everything will work out.

I know because when I was her age, I felt the same way.

Except that my parents are very different from her parents.

Sometimes I wonder if I should have stayed with her dad, just because it might have made some slight difference to PDaughter's prospects.

I don't know.

But a week from today, PDaughter leaves for two weeks in New York.

I hope that when she returns, I'll still matter.


  1. Of course you'll still matter.

    That's exciting, though. My parents could not afford to take me around to schools when I was considering colleges, and I didn't have an aunt who did it, either.

    Plus, there was really no one else in my family who'd ever gone to college.

    She has months and months to decide. I am sure you'll be consulted...

  2. Apparently Canadian spammers and precocious daughters get along well.


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