Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Empty nest syndrome?

Okay, it's a bit early. After all, my boys are still young and I'm more often in the position of being a full-time (or nearly) mom, than dealing with time on my hands. But it is just different, other, a jolt if you will, to be alone in my house. It is not unpleasant. But, it is a shift.

Last night and today it is just me and Filou. So, what did I do? I watched girlie movies, a modern romance followed by Mansfield Park. Then I read a chapter of a glorious adventure novel I've already read, but it is so good... For anyone who knows Dorothy Dunnett, I am sure you will agree. All her novels are worthy of multiple reads. And with this slothful behavior (or indulgent or?) I was asleep pretty late. No glorious sunrise this morning. I slept through it even without a curtain over my East-facing window.

I've an impeccably trained (ha!) dog who never bothers me in the morning (amazing ability to hold it till I actually get up and let him out -- never an accident discovered). Add to this the quiet neighborhood and, yes, no kids. Wow.

It's hard to get moving when the outside stimulus is removed. I did, but, ever so slowly. PJs till 11... Tea in hand and some of my toasted corn bread (American genes surfacing again) I went back to bed and worked on my various texts. The weather outside was not helping matters: gray, rain, drips, yuck.

I downloaded more movies -- I'm on a roll. It's that end of winter media crunch. Many a year I spent overdosing on movies or the Friends' series, or the Making of The Lord of the Rings late winter. It's that time of year when tourism work is non-existent (though I could put more updates on the web site), the world is dark, the weather uninspiring... I've finished all the books I received for Christmas and the New Yorker is just not looking as interesting as it normally does. And so it is the season for screen time. I'll get over it, but at the moment, I'm browsing ITunes like an addict.

Once actually dressed and out of bed -- yes I did eventually do this. I motored through the day: housekeeping, filling the wood pile, vaccuuming, sending a sample bottle of JP's VdPays wine to Norway, and yes, more writing. I did stick in a lovely long walk, amidst the drizzle and drips of this gray and rainy day.

So, all things relative, it's not as slothful a day as it might have been. Those Puritan roots are just too strong for me.

Onward to a lovely evening out with a fellow blogger.


Zuleme said...


Madeleine Vedel said...

But of course!

Gillian said...

I seem to be on a roll comment-wise today. Yes, the sheer of indulgence of being alone in the house. My girls are now 16 1/2 and out quite a lot leaving messy signs of themselves in their wake, however. The whole empty nest thing is complex, both longed for and dreaded simultaneously. I read in the Irish Times the other day, that, when a woman visits the doctors surgery saying she's losing her head all the time, if there are teenagers in the house, they have a hard time figuring out whether it's that or the menopause which is responsible for her symptoms! I'm practising
for the day when I'll simply luxuriate in a dynamic peacefulness rather than feel the lonely pangs for a sweetness past. Ok, forget that, it'll be different and I'll embrace whatever comes....

Madeleine Vedel said...

Oh Gillian, yes, that is it. On the one hand it is a gift to have time alone to write, do yoga, walk, consider, read... but on the other, the impetus and forward motion that kids provide (insist upon) is rather addictive... afterwards, it'll be all up to us, as it once used to be.