Who knew a hammock would be my solution to my motherhood crisis. I had always looked forward to the day my son, Nolan, would turn 16. I’ve always been the parent excited for his first steps, first day of kindergarten, first sports competition. I gave him the skills to be self-sufficient and independent early on so he could have confidence in himself. I have loved watching him grow and learn about himself and see a glimmer of who he is yet to become.
I was in no way prepared for the day I burst into tears because I realized I would no longer have my morning commute with him, or our “after game chats” on our way home. He had already started his teenage shenanigans and tells me weekly, “Mom, I got this…I know.” His independence scared me. Without him, who was I??
Nolan was born my senior year of college. I have never been without him and I had a been a single parent for the majority of his childhood. My entire existence and day-to-day routine was centered around him and his needs- getting him to school, practices, meals, homework, laughing at each other’s jokes, giving hugs and kisses at night, and learning “guy things” to be able to play both parent roles.
His driver’s license meant that I was getting part of my “freedom card” back. I easily gained 8-10 hours a week by him driving. And I bawled and bawled when he drove away the first time. My heart ached for the first few months because I missed our drives. The car is where he would open up to me – something about not being able to look me directly in the eye allowed him to share his life with me.
The first month I literally walked around the house helpless with no idea what to do at 4pm in the afternoon. I started talking to the dog more than people. I would scroll endlessly on Facebook, never reading anything. I felt lonely and from that loneliness I began to drive him crazy with question after question and smothering him. But I also worried like I had never worried before. Will he get in an accident, will he get lost, will he make poor choices???
So, I had two choices. I could drive him to insanity which would probably result in him moving out (yes, I can be that bad,) or I could try to figure out who the hell Rachel is. The second option scares me more than the first. I don’t have excuses any more for my quick tempter and lack of patience. I had time to work on my career, focus on my new marriage, focus on friends (did I even have any??)
And that’s where I have been the last 6 months..finding me. Since I have a lot of time on my hands, Amazon and I have become very close (and my wallet lighter.) I found a hammock online and dreamed about the options it could bring me – lazy days reading, naps under the trees, morning coffee listening to birds and watching the squirrels, and an extra seating place for our bonfires at night. While all of those daydreams became a reality; it mostly has brought me a place to meditate and really think about me and where I am heading…how I’m evolving. So, if you are stuck like me….get a hammock!