I finally did it. On the Thursday before he was to come home from college for fall break, I rummaged through the pile of discarded clothes in Youngest Son’s bedroom and made stacks — what to give away, what to store away, and what to wash.
What to wash……
Who would have thought that years of wearing out the washing machine with four boys’ dirty blue jeans, mud-stained T-shirts and grimy socks would have come down to this: a tiny load of forgotten favorites.
In conversation with an old friend early this morning, I was asked about this empty nest of ours. “So, are you liking this new season you find yourself in?” I had to be honest, so I told her.
“Not really. It stinks.”
Of course, I laughed and added that there were some good parts, but mostly, I’m still getting used to the idea. And some days, it does stink.
Not the kind of stink I used to complain about — you know, the sweaty gym shoes, smelly basketball uniforms, weeks-old apple cores found under their beds. But the kind of stink that says “not much happening around here these days.” A sweet fragrance, perhaps, in a different state of mind. But kind of an empty smell when you’re used to all that parenting activity surrounding and filling your days. There’s still plenty to do in my world, but it doesn’t have the same friendly fragrance as a pile of dirty blue jeans and wrinkled PJs.
Laundry……..wouldn’t mind doing a little more of it once in awhile.