The kids are on their way to college and your house is no longer filled with the same energy, music, tears and laughter that you have been used to for 18 years. In fact, it's quiet. So quiet that you actually can't think without all the noise of a full house. It's a strange time because it begs the question: What now? What do I do now that my children are grown and I've become an empty nester?
Well, the first order of business is to decide what you are going to do with the newly abandoned bedroom. This is a new time in your life, too, and you want to afford yourself a smooth adjustment. Some people completely do away with the old bedroom of their son and/or daughter. Some might leave things just as they were and keep the room as a shrine. Still others will keep the room as a way to assure them that they have a place to return to when they visit.
I'd like to give you some ways of addressing the issue of the new potentially "empty" room in your home. Keep in mind that you should think of your needs first. Whether you are a single parent or have a partner/significant other, please consider asking yourself the following:
- How often will the room be empty during a full year? If the answer is that it will be just used on holidays, then think about re-purposing the room to suit your own needs. Maybe turn it into a studio, sewing room or den, for instance.
- Do you have a hobby, or need a place to steal away for some meditative thought? This new room could be the answer to your quest for that special sacred space.
- Will you be sharing the room with your partner? If so, then it should probably be a neutral room and not a bedroom. If you decide to have anything there to sleep on, make it a daybed so it fits into the "sofa" theme and can provide you with a comfortable place to relax.