Wide Open is my Thursday Topic. That means I can pick any old thing I want to write about. Today, I think I’ll write about what wide open means to me at this time in my life.
I am about to be 54 years old. I have been married for 34 years and I have five grown children, one of whom still resides with us, but will be marrying in the fall. He has yet to find an apartment or home, so there’s a small chance he and his bride will make their home with us until they find a place of their own. Another son works two weeks on (out of state) and two weeks off. He has an apartment in another city, but his company will be transferring him to our area within a few months. He has a room here in our house and spends most of his off weeks here. He, too, plans on buying a home when he finds the right one.
What I’m getting at is that we are not empty nesters, yet. We have had in the back of our minds for the last three or so years, plans to sell this house and move someplace less crowded, more rural. We don’t have a certain town in mind, more a general area. We are almost to a time in our lives where we will be wide open for a change.
Sure, we could sell our home now and force our kids to speed up their decision making, but that’s not the kind of parents we’ve been, so why start now? We weren’t able to pay for our kids college degrees (they’ll be paying off student loans for years) so the least we can do is provide a roof over their heads as long as they need or want it. And no, we don’t charge them rent. One of them took over the utilities while we lived out of town for close to a year and he kept paying most of them when we moved back. He also takes care of the yard work. The other one chips in here and there and pays for dinner if we all go out. At 22, he has said, “You know, I’d like to buy a house and you guys can sell the house and come live with me. It’s one thing to live with your parents at my age, but if my parents lived with me, that’s completely different!” It’s nice to know that he wants to be the responsible party.
So that’s the situation on the home front. The job front is wide open. This could really be 2 other posts, so I’ll reserve details for a later time. Let’s just say that for now, both my husband and I are not employed. We’re wide open. We’ve discussed lots of different options. Options as in directions we could try, success is not guaranteed. He is actively searching for a job in two unrelated fields, but no luck. I’m working on becoming a substitute for the local school district. My aim is to remain flexible in case he finds work in another city. I don’t feel right seeking permanent employment with a company and then jumping ship. Not that I could land a permanent position anyway. I’m fairly new back in the job market after being a stay at home mom for 26 years.
We are wide open to the possibilities that exist. We are free to dream, explore and consider all the options out there. Sometimes the hard part is deciding what direction to aim.