I am loving the stage of life I am at

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
I am loving the stage of life I am at
9
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 8:59am

I am really enjoying the empty nest no grandkids stage. It is a stage of life that my mother and many of her generation were not able to enjoy.

Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 10:02am
I think each stage has it's perks & issues. I personally found the empty nest without grand kids somewhat lonely as the kids were so busy with their lives. They were going to school, working, falling in love, etc. and being with their parents all at the same time was a luxury reserved for Xmas, Easter & Thanksgiving.

It's important that you decide how much babysitting you want to do and stick to it. I have friends who rarely babysit while we do it a lot because we love it. Doesn't mean our friends love their grand kids any less than we do. It's just that we have different interests. Part of my enjoyment is that I feel I have more patience than I did when my 3 were little plus things aren't as important as they were to me when I was raising my kids so I'm more relaxed. Frankly, if DGS eats healthy meals most of the time then having chocolate cake for breakfast isn't going to hurt him once in a while. I wasn't that relaxed with my own.

The kids were so busy with their lives and didn't always make family a priority until DGS was born. His being born 10 wks early seemed to remind my boys especially that we were a family & needed to support each other. They lived at the hospital with us that first week while DGS struggled to live. I think we make more of an effort to be together now than we did before DGS was born. All 3 kids are interested in spending time with DGS and so he naturally draws us together. The boys have fed, changed diapers & bathed DGS since he was born.

I love the grandparent stage. I get to enjoy DGS but give him back when the thrill is over. We are a very low key family & so when DGS was born, I was pleased to see that DD decided to have DGS fit into this life. So many of her friends won't take their kids out during nap time for example. They followed rigid schedules & allowed little flexibility then complained about their loss of freedom. DGS learned to sleep anywhere & with whatever noise was happening at the time. He got out of the hospital on a Wed and was out for his first restaurant visit on the following Mon. He has a bedroom in our house, in his other grandparents home & at home. He moves from one to the other with ease. This makes it so much easier for us to enjoy him as he is a very laid back child.

Dee
Avatar for elc11
Community Leader
Registered: 06-16-1998
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 11:27am

I am in the same stage as you emptynester, and agree that it makes getting together with the kids less complicated. In our case its because its hard enough to get the kids here from out of town; if they had to also bring kids it might be much more difficult and/or expensive and so not happen much.

Avatar for shirley_v
iVillage Member
Registered: 04-29-2000
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 5:33pm

I am somewhere in between for this topic.

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 7:46pm

Avatar for suzyk2118
iVillage Member
Registered: 07-30-1997
Fri, 12-30-2011 - 8:46pm
I'm kinda before this stage - ds19 is in college, and although his school is only 8 miles away, he's never home during the semesters except maybe for 15 minutes to an hour every week or so. He has a steady gf who he hopes to eventually marry, and he hopes to move to Chicago (she's from there; we are but haven't lived there since '78 for dh and '84 for me). So my bigger concern is if he moves there and thus any future grandkids would be 300 miles away. He's also talked about living in California, which obviously would be further. So I'm more in that uneasy unknown stage as to if he'll ever live near us again (he's an only, as am I).

Sue
Avatar for nora_mcl
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-30-2011
Sun, 01-01-2012 - 1:18am

Well, I'm at a different stage than most of you are. My children are older-41, 39 & (almost) 38 & Adam is 27. I have grandchildren whom I dearly love. Unfortunately, they live in towns away from us-one is about 3 1/2 hours west of us, the other is about 2 1/2 hours east of us. Our daughters live busy lives-they work, their kids are in many activities-so our time with them is limited. I would like to see more of them-but it sometimes because impossible. We can't travel there with Adam-& they are too busy to travel here often.

The 2nd dd is really good about keeping us as an integral part of the family-I can't tell you how much we enjoyed the phonecall from her 4 year old telling us about his first goal in hockey.-the first one in the opposing teams net!

iVillage Member
Registered: 08-22-2009
Sun, 01-01-2012 - 9:12am

Avatar for sabrtooth
iVillage Member
Registered: 12-03-1999
Tue, 01-03-2012 - 9:26pm

I guess our family is rather different than many of you.

Avatar for deenow17
iVillage Member
Registered: 10-12-2004
Wed, 01-04-2012 - 7:37pm
DH was the babysitter for our DGS, Noah from the time DD decided to go back to school when he was 18 mths. This just ended last Sept when he started full day school at 4. Noah & Mom would move in as DD worked shift work & it was only 15 min to work from our house instead of 45 from her house. It was wonderful having the opportunity to have Noah live with us. He is sitting beside me now as I type this while he watches a Star Wars movie. He is spending the week with us as school is out. We have moved 2 hrs away from his house but he still has his own bedroom which none of my kids can now claim except for my youngest of the 3. If there are anymore grandkids, we will hope to babysit part time.

We are now too far away for date night but there are certain times that are Gram & Poppa time like Dec 31/Jan 1st. It's movie night for grandparents & Noah. He was 8 mths old when he started this tradition.

We enjoy our time with Noah, it's been special & gives us much joy!

Dee