It was Sunday afternoon when it dawned on me – our trash was scheduled to be picked up the next day and our boys were not around to collect the trash in the house and put the bins out on the street. I realized I had just inherited another chore – one that I had off-loaded to them several years ago.
It’s been a week since we dropped Jacob and Joshua off at the Naval Academy and West Point respectively. Jen and I have officially transitioned into Empty Nesters!
Transitions are a fact of life. You start out as a baby and transition to a toddler. After the toddler phase comes the pre-school phase, followed by grade school and the dreaded teenage years. At 18, society views you as an adult, though we all know that mileage varies with teens these days.
As a Young Adult you either get a job or you go to college, after which you try to find a job and develop a career. Most Young adults will get married, at which point they enter a new series of transitions…Newly married with no kids which is often followed by the Married with kids stage, in which each child goes through the succession of aforementioned growth stages.
As a parent, I find that each phase has its pluses and minuses. Often, there’s a longing for your child to reach the next stage. I remember when our twins were babies, we couldn’t wait to get out of the diaper phase. And then when they were toddlers, we couldn’t wait for them to begin school, thinking about how much more restful and productive it might be for those few hours a day when the boys were not under our watchful eye.
When they were in grade school, we couldn’t wait for them to get to middle school, when they could watch themselves long enough for Jen and I to go out on a date without having to pay for a sitter. If you’ve priced sitters recently, you know what I’m talking about!
In high school, we couldn’t wait for them to be able to drive themselves so we wouldn’t have to be their personal Uber, driving them back and forth to school and all around town to their various events and activities.
Now that they’ve graduated and have transitioned to college, I find that I no longer am looking forward to the next transition but instead, I’m longing for the stages that have passed.
Transitions are normal and even healthy, even though they may be hard and sometimes painful. Transitions often bring new challenges and new responsibilities which are often an opportunity for growth and personal development.
When I think about it, I realize that our job with Cru is really to help people transition. Specifically, we help Young adults as they navigate the transition from college to the professional world. Life for the recent grad is complicated with a lot of new responsibilities and demands. Figuring out how to integrate the spiritual dimension is especially tough given the lack of resources the church has traditionally invested into this audience.
Our ministry division has recently undergone a slight transition as well. Since Millennials are getting older, we realize that very soon, our target audience will be folks who are “Gen Z”, as opposed to “Millennials”. The name Millennials will soon be non-descriptive of the people we’re actually ministering to. As a result, we’ve changed our name to Cru Embark, to reflect the transitory nature of the 20-Something audience. In the months to come, you may notice some changes in our logo and other materials but know that our mission is the same and our audience is the same. We’ve simply made a slight name change to reflect the audience to which we’re seeking to minister.
We’re so grateful for you and your prayers for us. Please continue to pray for us as we Embark on this new transition of Empty-Nesthood and as we continue to help Young Professionals navigate the transitions of life!