The other day we were at a restaurant along with our toddler enjoying some delicious tomato basil soup with warm bread when the waitress came to check on us and the usual pleasantries followed. She then stuck a friendly conversation with our toddler and mentioned that she has 5 kids of her own but now all are grown up and left her house and they are on their own. Enjoy your toddler as much as you can for now she said as kids grow very fast and it feels empty after they leave. I nodded my head sympathetically; I could understand her feelings but struggled to find the right words.
We as parents raise our children from helpless infants to young adults and in the process develop a deep sense of bonding and attachment to them. We nourish them, foster them, and teach them to be independent by giving them “wings to fly”. But once they leave it is as though a major part of our life is lost and leaves us an empty, void feeling.
We are not like the birds, where the mother bird nourishes, protects her young ones only until they are able to fly. Once they fly the mother bird leaves the nest herself to seek other pursuits and the young ones are left to fend for themselves. She does not come back to an empty nest as we do.
I immediately felt that wrenching knot in my stomach knowing that my time is not far off, as days and years pass by very fast. I will be facing that predicament soon even before I realize it. After brooding over it for a long time, I was stuck with realization. There were many incidents in my life for which I had no control on and neither did I plan it that way. But they all turned out for good and shaped the life that I have today. This particular incident is in the horizon and I have no control over it, but I have to face it and accept it.
But there are other things for which I have control on, like my feelings, positive thinking, and outlook of life. I need to accept life as a carpe diem and relish it with each passing day without worrying about the future. I need to enjoy the beautiful moments with the kids, and other loved ones and learn to count on my blessings.
I need to be strong and independent all the times realizing that my own parents have given me “wings to fly”.