The Husband and I are quite happy that our Middle wants to live at home for now as she starts her teaching career. Teachers don’t make enough to live on their own and still be able to pay off college debt. It’s a sensible decision.
Plus, she’s really good company. I like having her around.
But, here at the end of her third week of her career, some issues are starting to bite us in the ass. Witness:
- The evening last week when she chose to make home made peanut butter while researching for an upcoming lesson she wanted to teach. Fine, as far as that goes. The problem arose when I awoke the next morning to find the 17,352 pieces of her food processor floating in the greasy water of the Crock Pot I had left in the sink to soak. Being a neat freak, I always clear up all the dishes in the kitchen before I leave for work. I was not thrilled to have to play “bobbing for slimed-up, sharp metal implements” at 8 am.
- Last night when the daughter kindly finished up the dishes after supper. But didn’t manage to turn on the dishwasher. Today I awoke to a load of smelly dishes and not a single clean pancake turner for my French toast.
I can’t fault the kid for her enthusiasm and total devotion to her students. She’s out the door by 6 am, and not home until at least 6 pm. Except for last night when she didn’t leave school until 7:00. Not a word from her, so of course I was picturing her attacked and left unconscious in the parking lot.
That’s part of the problem. She’s old enough she doesn’t need to check in with anyone. But when you live under the same roof, there has to be some communication, simply out of courtesy.
I waver between thinking “Gosh, it must be nice to have someone to do all your laundry, buy your groceries, and pick up after you day in and day out” and remembering how on fire I was when I first started teaching. I’m in the same job I’ve had for 12 years – rarely anything earth shattering (although just now there actually are a few earth-shattering things in the works) and she’s just starting out. I’ve got perspective and years of experience keeping a house running. She’s been a great help around the house for years but currently is 100% consumed with her work.
So there’s tension.
We have good reason to believe that the nest will become even more crowded in just under a year, when our son graduates. He hopes to find a teaching job in our metro area, and will be in the same boat financially, though he’ll have almost no debt to repay. It’s likely the nest will become even more crowded, and we’ll be in even more need of ground rules.
I guess by then we’ll have some practice.