Lisa Ricard Claro – Author

Romance is good for your heart!

The Chick has Flown the Coop!

Posted on Mar 29, 2010 by Lisa Ricard Claro   8 Comments | Posted in daughter · nest · son · wings

My eldest daughter left the nest. On Saturday, fifteen months after earning her college degree and struggling in this hellish economy to land a career-track job, Stephanie moved to her own apartment. Her persistence prevailed and she is now on her own. She earned her wings, and I’m very proud of her.

Stephanie’s departure provoked my thinking about the differences between the genders.  When my son, Joey, moved out on his own I didn’t worry about him. He’s a big, strong guy who can take care of himself.  On the flip side, Steph is five-foot nuttin’.  Now, in a verbal battle my diminutive darling could shred Darth Vader into scrap metal with her arsenal of witty sarcasms.  Unfortunately, I doubt her worthy one-liners will stave off any bad guys intent on harm.

Is it fair that we sent our son on his merry way armed with reminders to wash behind his ears and eat his veggies, but we’re itching for Stephanie to attend ninja training?  Although I spent equal mama tears on my departing children, Joey’s move brought fewer fears than Stephanie’s.  Does her smaller stature really mean she is less equipped than her big brother to live alone?  Or does it just mean I’m gender biased? I’m not sure.

Stephanie’s move also spotlighted the difference in priorities between my husband and me.  We embarked on a shopping excursion to purchase a few things we thought she might need, and boy did we have different ideas about what those might be.  Joe opted for a measuring tape, a deadbolt, picture hangers and nails.  I collected cute oven mitts, matching dish towels, an African violet and a cheery flower pot.  We met at the check-out, eyed the item groupings of tools from daddy, decor from mama, and chuckled.  Kids really do need both a mom and a dad, just for balance. 

Fortunately for me I have yet one little chick snuggled in the nest.  Christy is flexing her wings daily and in just a few years she, too, will take flight.  Still, our nest will never be empty.  Even with the kids on their own Joe and I will be here warming the roost, planning and dreaming of our future which is, ironically, how we started out thirty years ago.  Things do come full circle.

And you know what, buttercup? That sounds like a perfect flight plan to me.

‘Til next time –

8 Responses to "The Chick has Flown the Coop!"

  1. Comment by Linda O'Connell
    March 30, 2010 at 8:08 am  

    Lisa, This bittersweet moment is one that will make wonderful future stories. I love your description about shredding Darth Vader into scrap metal. I have a daughter with a sharp tongue too. Even when our fledglings fly away, they always return to that comfy roost. Blessings to her and a worry-free day to you.

  2. Comment by BECKY
    March 30, 2010 at 9:58 am  

    Hi Lisa! What a sweet and powerful article. If I had a daughter, I'm sure I would be going through those same feelings!

  3. Comment by Lynn
    March 30, 2010 at 11:23 am  

    When I read things like this I'm usually critical of myself (bad mother) because I was leaping for joy when my children moved out – both genders! Everyone kept telling me I'd have empty nest and I told them, "No way!" and I don't. I love my children and they are good, respectful, independent, loving individuals and I couldn't have asked for any better, but I love my empty nest. I'm sure you've done a fine job and you need not worry.

  4. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    March 30, 2010 at 5:04 pm  

    Linda – Bittersweet is definitely the word to describe how I felt on Saturday. It would be impossible not to enjoy Steph's excitement, though, and that made it a great day.Becky – Thanks. I love my girls, but boys are easier! LOLLynn – I'm on the fence. I'm definitely looking forward to the quiet time with my husband, but I'll miss the full house. I'm viewing it as another phase in my life, to be enjoyed as are each of the others. I'm not there yet (2 down, 1 to go) so I'm not sure how I'll do with the final transition. You make it sound great!

  5. Comment by Cathy C. Hall
    March 31, 2010 at 11:24 pm  

    I'm sure someday I'll feel the same way. But the other day, it occurred to me (while standing over the stove) that I have been cooking for kids for 25 years. 25 YEARS. And I hate to cook. :-)(P.S. I have a feeling Steph can take care of herself. She's learned from the best 🙂

  6. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    April 1, 2010 at 5:37 am  

    Thanks, Cath. When at Steph's apt on Sunday I opened her fridge. The freezer was stocked literally top to bottom with Lean Cuisines and Hot Pockets. The fridge contained a six pack of beer and a gallon of milk. Guess she's got the basics. *sigh*

  7. Comment by Jillian
    April 1, 2010 at 11:08 pm  

    It is amazing for me to read this, and ponder how I will feel when my now 6 week old baby will be flying the coop many years from now. Crazy to think about! Congrats to Steph!

  8. Comment by Lisa Ricard Claro
    April 2, 2010 at 12:48 am  

    Hi Jilly!! Congrats to you, too — how is our beautiful boy Rowan? Six weeks…yikes. I have a hard time remembering when my young 'uns were that little. Give Rowan a big smoochie from his great-auntie.

Leave a Comment

%d bloggers like this: