The last thing a parent wants to say to an adult child is “Get Out!” but sometimes they need additional push to go live out in the big bad world after being given many chances to live under mom and dad’s roof. I am happy to say, the last set of our children have moved out; my youngest Shannon (21) and her wife Savanna (23) and our recent guest (Allen’s daughter) of a month, Iliah (22) and David (32) are gone. Now, it’s Grandma, Allen, me, three dogs, and a fat Garfield cat named Frankie.

Between Allen and I, we have 17 children. He has five biological and six step children. I have 3 biological, two daughters-in-law and one whose mom passed away that I have adopted.

We love our children dearly and would do anything in our power to help them, but the transition from children to adulthood for us has been a rough one!

However (you knew this was coming), the house is quiet, the kitchen table is broken down to seat four, the rooms are bare, and the remodeling has begun.

And we feel ammmmmaaaazzzzziiinnngggg!

No more interrupted evenings of I need this! Don’t you have money? Why can’t I?

No more drama, crisis, power struggles, attitudes of “I know more than you” or “I can’t pay rent here but I can pay at my friends…”

WTF is that logic?

Raising Kids Is Tough

I am an only child! Raising three kids (Mitch 23, Scott 23 and Shannon 21) was a struggle from the beginning. I didn’t know how to be a mother. I was independent and took care of myself. Me, myself and I! I felt like I lived in a coma for the first 10 years of their lives. I was lucky these kids stayed alive. Then my children married, and Savanna (23), Houstin (23), and Aundrea (19) came into my life.

Allen was the baby of four, picked on and protected by his older siblings. In his first marriage, he had two children Justin (29) and Misty (27) and adopted Josh (35). He later married a lady who had six children: Ben (26), Hannah (30), Mindy (33), Jenny (34), Beth (28) and Alina (25). Together they had two children, Levi (23) and Iliah (22).

Our family is unique, like yours.

We have a little of everyone: Air Force…Autism…Caregivers…Law Enforcement…Medical Assistant…Moms…Computer Geeks…Globe Trotters and those still learning the ways of the world (the ones who still come home, staying a bit, and leave again).

We actually enjoy and are proud to say we have parented or helped 17 children to adulthood. We love them all and wish them then best on their journey of life! But, wow we are tired!

Free at last? Not likely…