Being a parent is a full-time job, one where you're always on the clock. From the day they're born to the day they move out, there's at least 18 years of constantly being in motion as you feed them, clothe them and raise them right. Naturally, your duties as a parent are for life, but the day your kids move out is still a pretty big deal. A lot of parents suddenly find themselves with a lot more time as all their chores are cut down - less laundry to wash, less food to make, etc. The house seems a little too quiet, and they're not really sure what to do with themselves now.
This feeling is known as "empty nest syndrome," and it's a pretty common phenomenon. The best cure is to find something that keeps you busy, whether it's a hobby, a sport, volunteering or some other project. Some people get into dancing, while others simply go and start taking care of someone else like a grandchild or nephew/niece.
For M.J. Boyle, it's been her tiny house. After her kids left home, she poured her heart and soul into constructing a small home on wheels over the course of a year. She documented the process in her blog, My Empty Nest.
M.J. had been interested in "all things tiny and old" ever since she was a young girl.
After being inspired by a beautiful, abandoned farmhouse near her home, she started sketching plans for her tiny house, which she calls "My Empty Nest."
She started the project as a way to relieve stress after her kids moved out. "You've been my happy place," she says, speaking directly to the house on her blog, "[you've] given me challenges to conquer and problems to solve."
The construction and maintenance gave M.J. a sense of purpose, and even on bad days she would find joy in the progress that she made.
"Even though we couldn't get your heater to work, we had Thanksgiving Dinner in your living room," she writes, "I even made a tiny table just big enough for a turkey dinner for two."
She's had friends and family come to check out the house, and they all loved it too.
"I'm not sure that others would be so emotional about their tiny houses, but this ending is so bittersweet for me," she says.
The house is sprinkled with little phrases of encouragement and wisdom.
Currently, M.J. is still in transition and doesn't live in the tiny home full-time. She's still adding various upgrades like upholstered chairs and more.
She hopes that the home will be a place where love and friendship can grow.
"You have helped me see that no matter where my kids are, and even if I am your only official occupant, you will never be truly empty."
Via: Little Things My Empty Nest