So, it’s here, my empty nest moment. I’ve known it was coming for a while since I realised that by a simple quirk of fate, both of my children, even though they are almost 5 years apart in age, would leave home within a month of each other. The thing that strikes me the most is how they have taken their very essence and energy with them. Our house feels very empty and I wasn’t expecting that! I know there will be many new and wonderful things to come out of this; opportunities, experiences and more happy days when they are once again sitting round our kitchen table, telling us about their lives, but right now it’s quite a challenge as I learn to accept the ending of my most important and creative job. My friends who are a bit ahead of me tell me how parenting is never over and they come back, and I know that, but what is over is the ‘knowing’ of how they feel in the day to day, the sharing of triumphs and disappointments as they happen, the casual, but important, conversations late at night just when you are desperate to go to bed! Those memories make me want to reach back in time and hold their hot little hands in mine once more. I have watched with wonder and pride as they have grown from babies to toddlers to children to young adults and now they are gone to start their adult lives which is the right order of things of course. It has been a privilege you know, and I loved every minute.