Family Far and Wide

Mom, Mike, Cindy & Tim 1980

I just made up a hashtag. #MWNKIT=Mom With No Kids In Town. I can’t be the only one. In fact I know I’m not as Al and I celebrate Thanksgiving every year with friends who also have two sons that live in other states. Our kids grew up together and none of us ever thought they would leave for good. Raise their families elsewhere.

But they did and we have to live with it. It’s not easy, but it gets less painful every year. There’s still an ache, but FaceTime helps. I got to see my sons with their sons this holiday and it did my heart good. What I would prefer is to move to the west coast where they are, but Al is still working, and also, for him more than me, this is our home.


One way I recently learned to deal with the #MWNKIT feeling is to think of the painful stuff as just part of the ups and downs of life. Include the pain of missing someone (or a bunch of someones) into my idea of “life” and instead of judging it good or bad, just accept that this is how life is. Stop the inner struggle that would wish things were as they used to be. Because they aren’t but that doesn’t mean life can’t be good as it is.

I had to put this to the test when my dad took a fall recently and landed in the hospital in Florida. Many family members here in Detroit, me included, wanted to rush right down there and be with him. We wished he was here, with us. But he’s not. He’s there, we’re here. My dad is 79. He is precious to me. But, as Al reminded me, this is my home. Yes, I get that.

Me, Dad & Owen

Now I just have to convince my dad to get a smart phone so I can FaceTime with him until February when Al and I make our annual visit.


  1. This post resonates with me deeply, Cindy. Things took a turn this year with my son in CA, and I haven’t written about it publicly because is it so personal and heart-breaking. I have played with my grandson for just a few hours on two separate days this year, and we had one skype visit in May. Pictures for the year are ones I can capture off FB. It turns out it wasn’t anything I did but other things that have needed his attention. My sons will both come for a quick visit next weekend; neither will be here for Christmas but will spend that time with the families of their partners. My daughter lives 20 miles away and that is a blessing. As you know, one child never substitutes for another, so the absence of my sons will be felt. There is a huge hole in my life, and while life goes on it is not the same without them.


    1. Sharon, my heart goes out to you. I understand about relationships with our adult children taking unexpected and sometimes unwanted turns. As writers there is always that pull to tell it in a story, but like you I can’t write about some things publicly. In my case, it’s for the sake of family peace. Yes, we always love our children, but their absence can be very difficult to deal with. xxo


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