Muscling Through Some Life Changes

We had to say good-bye to our dog Cypress last week.

Heart-breaking…had to put her to sleep due to a fast growing, aggressive cancer.  She was pretty sick – lost 4 pounds in the last week. She spent her last nights sleeping with us in our bed.  We are all pretty sad.  Everywhere we look, we see reminders of her.  She came into our lives when Alex was 8 years old.  We just keep telling ourselves that she’s at peace now with no pain.

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Another big change coming next Saturday…

Alex leaves for his first year of college.   He’s pretty excited.  Talking to friends, gathering stuff for his room – lots of big plans.

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He’s all grown up…18 and going off to school.  No longer my little boy…Fall Concert 02

In his graduating class list of “most likely to’s,”  Alex was voted the one most likely…”To Write a Great American Novel.”  He probably will.

We’ve had all of our talks (too many according to Alex), checked all the lists (several times) and  have a room full of stuff collected through out summer for the big move.  He’s ready and we know he’ll do great and bottom line…He’ll be fine (even without me forecasting potential problems ahead and working out strategies and solutions for him).

It’s time to let go.

For this General of the Helicopter Mom’s of America’s army, that is very hard.  I’m breaking rank and doing it though.  This is what the past 18 years was to prepare him for so he’s going out and grabbing hold of his opportunity with both hands and we are cheering him on.  Still here if he needs us though.

For Jim and I, we are moving ahead and into our next phase of life together.

download (1)Probably healthier eating (before Alex could say “Happy Meal,” we rarely visited a fast food drive-through or knew what “Pizzapendence Day” was – that’s Friday for those not in the know).  We ate healthier and regularly went to the gym too.

For now though, after the loss of Cypress and Alex’s big move ahead, I spent Sunday, fixing some favorite foods to keep things on track.

Grief can cause eating to go awry which brings on illness.  So, heading that off with good stuff.

frigAlso, made some bread which isn’t the best for dieting, but Jim really likes it and this week…that’s all that matters.

roast and bread

We celebrated Carrie’s birthday this weekend and it really helped having them here.  Instead of it being filled with sadness it was a much more memorable and happier time.

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So what does all of this have to do with running????

5c03224c63d53ff009eeba1eb604e730Muscling through the loss of Cypress and letting Alex soar to new heights while looking forward to all the great life-moments ahead for our family.

What did you do following similar life changes to get past feelings of loss?   Any advice for new empty-nester’s?

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10 responses

  1. This is such a touching post. First I am so sorry that you had to say goodbye Cypress. We have 4 dogs and cats and they are a real part of our family and our lives and I know how difficult it is to lose one. But Cypress is at peace without any more pain – I am sending you lots of postive thoughts and prayers.
    We haven’t quite got to kids leaving home yet – but I am not looking forward to it. From the second they grab your finger when they are hours old, you have a dilemna. You know you never want them to let go, but you know the most important role you have in life is to bring them up so they can let go. The Red Indians have a wondereful phrase for it – they say that a parents jobs is to give their children “Roots to grow and wings to fly”.
    I am sure Alex will go on to great things and you and your husband will start a great new fulfilling phase of your life. Thanks again for such a wonderful post.

    • Wow, thanks Peter! “Roots to grow and wings to fly,” so true. Thanks for stopping by and really appreciate your kind words. Blessings to you! Anne

  2. Thanks for sharing your thoughts. That is one way of “dealing” with changes!!! Of course all the Pauls’ know Alex will do great at TSU!!! Best thing is he’s close, even if you don’t see him often, you know you can!!! Best thing for you and Jim is to visit the Cardinal Cabin and just sit and watch the “lake” go by!!! Talk to you soon. Kris and Bill

  3. “Growing Pains” still happen in our adult life. I think you and Jim may enjoy this time more than you know. It’s a bittersweet time. You expressed it so well in your post. You are doing great, really enjoy your writing. I believe it helps keep things in perspective. Just remember Keep moving forward, always forward…for life!

    • Thanks Dolores! Writing is therapeutic for me. Running does teach us how to push through pain. At the same time we’re excited for Alex too. Just have to let him fly on his own. Have a great day!

  4. What a touching post ;_; I guess growth is always preceded by change but that doesn’t mean it’s easy or enjoyable at the time =\ keep up ur proactive attitude, we’re cheering you on!

  5. I’ve lost pets before, and it is very difficult. They are sweet little members of your family that bring such joy to our lives.
    My oldest daughter will be a college junior this year. She had an internship this summer and lived with us. It’s been great. But I feel like I havn’t seen her enough or spent enough time with her. I think seeing her go after having this time with her is almost as difficult as walking away from her freshman dorm room when we dropped her off. My throat is tight right now.
    My youngest is a HS senior and I think all of us are a little flipped out about that. Where did the time go? I feel like I have one year left with her and then the world will take over and teach her more than I will. I see it in my oldest daughter now.

    I’m not an empty nester yet. A friend of mine became one last fall, turned 50 and is having a great year. Your heart will ache, tears may flow but you will discover a new life. Part of me is looking forward to this new life. Part of me wants to go to soccer practice.

    • You know what I’m feeling because you are experiencing it too. You have to go through it though with each child and the youngest will be the hardest probably. Bless your heart for sharing that. I know with each year he’ll need me/us less and less. I think that is the hardest part. I catch myself telling him how to do this or that – thinking ahead again trying to solve those potential problems. He is so tired of hearing it. Yet, he too is starting to see that we are about to transition, because he’ll walk up to me for no reason and give me a hug. He knows….it’s time to use those wings and fly. Thanks for sharing and stopping by – I know we’ve shared thoughts before…take care –
      Anne

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