We spent the Thanksgiving holiday with long-time close friends in the Bay Area. The 24-year-old son of the family had graduated 18 months ago with honors from an Ivy league school and immediately found a job in New York City -- 3,000 miles away from home. But a few months ago, a new and better-paying job brought him back to the Bay Area. The hallelujah chorus you heard was his mother celebrating the fact that he not only would be closer, but had agreed to move back into their family home while he looked for his own apartment.
On Sunday, he moved to that apartment. Now we all know that our success as parents is measured in how well we prepare our children for adulthood and this young man was successfully parented by anyone's definition. But our "graduation" comes when our children are ready to fly solo and graduations can be tinged with a little sadness. The point was not lost on his mother when this bright successful young man turned the key to his new apartment. Sure he had lived on his own before, she told me, but this was the first time that he was living away from his family by choice, not distance. It's different, she told me.
While we fully expect him to join his family for dinner in just a few nights -- it got us wondering: What hopes do you have for your adult kids in 2014? That they get a job, get divorced, find love, learn how to cook? Here's what you had to say on our Facebook page:
Sharon Hodor Greenthal hopes her daughter "gets a well-deserved promotion in 2014" and that her son, who graduates from college in May, "finds the job of his dreams." Added this mom, "And I hope they each fall madly in love!"
Denice Loritsch would be happy if her son could just get "some face-to-face [job] interviews -- not just email communication" in his job search. She too added, "Also, it's time for him to find the right girl." Mary Dell Harrington's son, who graduated from college in May, began a job in September and moved into his first apartment recently. His mom hopes he "continues on this independent trajectory."
Some moms, like Joan Scaringe Monson, just want their kids to "find peace and inner happiness," or "Good health and fulfillment in their lives!," as Lynn Robison DeRosa put it.
And no pressure coming from Connie Correa-Gutierrez who gives a shout out to Rebecca M. Gutiérrez & Alin Airinei to "make me a Grandma again!!! I love every second!"
Anita Skeets Rogers set her sights a little lower. She hopes her kids "Learn to take out the trash without me asking." And from Kathy McFarland Sciannella, that her children continue on their path to success "but still find time for Mom and Dad."
And because we know that not all of our offspring are perfect, Jaye DeVeney Gilleland expresses the hope that 2014 would be the year one of them "truly grows up and takes responsibility for their own actions instead of blaming everyone else."
Rachel Cracken Herbig's wish for her three kids is their continued happiness and that they "stay in touch with family through the years."