How to Be A Happy, Romantic Empty Nester

This is me, reporting live from the other side of taking our baby to college three months ago. Now everyone approaches me gingerly and asks quietly, "So, how are you and Matt doing? Are you okay?" At first I felt guilt for my cheerful, "We're doing great!" response, but now I'm starting to explain to people why.

Why are we happy, after both kids have left home? (I did not say BECAUSE they have left home.)

It started a few years ago.

I want you to stop and think about that. A few years ago Matt and I started looking ahead to our kids leaving home. We started talking about it and planning for it.

"We have to get good at this," he said to me. "We have to practice enjoying each other now, so that we don't end up as devastated, lost parents who have no idea how to have a relationship with each other when the kids are gone."

That was the most fun practice ever.

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