|I Am One Who Mourns the Empty Nest|
I've been doing some prompts with my art journaling group related to Croning, or growing older and embracing power and wisdom, as well as accepting the losses and challenges related to aging. We've been looking at the 13 Characteristics of a Juicy Crone in Jean Shinoda Bolen's book Crones Don't Whine.
One thing that has come up for me relates to the bout of depression I've been going through. I finally realized that although I am now retired (but will always work with SoulCollage®, Creativity and Art Therapy) and working on making friends with old age, I am still the mother who is watching her son move from young adulthood to adulthood. I finally saw that part of me is mourning the impending reality of my empty nest.
I seriously had the illusion that since my life has always been full of learning and exploring and creativity that I would not experience the "Empty Nest Syndrome" I thought reserved for suburban housewives whose lives have always been structured around their children. I came late to motherhood, birthing my son when I was 45. Now he is 18 and I am 64, and, like everyone always said, the time flew.
I am trying to plan for my future life as an single elder woman while helping him flex his wings and learn to fly. Not smooth for us, not like boarding a plane and short hours later arriving at a new destination. Of course life drives us on, whether we are ready for changes or not. Many potholes on this road have been jarring, nothing is simple. I've tried to be mother, father and friend to my child. Of course it is his job now to hate me, tolerate me and love me in unpredictable doses. Of course he demands independence and freedom but struggles mightily with paying attention to getting necessary things done, and turning his attention to life's requirements. And WHY hasn't he yet gotten his driver's license? I know he is equal parts (some days) wanting to grow up and wanting to remain a child.
The card pictures my empty nest with my well loved son smiling and close by on the left (past). The toy car represents my exhaustion with constant driving, my love for toys and my desire for him to drive himself, both in his life and in his (own) car. The nest is empty but contains feathers (wishes, dreams, memories, blessings) and a Crow on the right (future) is bringing a shiny orange orb to the nest. Hmm, perhaps I haven't lost all my marbles yet, lol.
I Am One Who Mourns the Empty Nest
I Am One Who Drives My Son Everywhere,All the Time
I Am One Who is Ready to Begin My Solitary Life
I Am One Who Wishes My Son to Make His Way Into the World
I An One Who Wishes My Son to Find His True Vocation and His Life's Companion
I Am One Who is Lonely
I Am One Who Fears the Financial and Physical Challenges of Old Age
I Am One Who Has a Nest Feathered with Treasured Memories, Creative Projects and Friends
I Am One Who Misses the Innocent Toys of Childhood
I Am One Who Knows the Future Brings Treasures and Joy
I Am One Who Honors the Life-Death-Life Cycle
I Am One Who Celebrates My Sister Crones and Our Place in Life
I Am One Who Is Grateful for What the Crow Brings.