If you were to go back in time, say 10 years or so, to ask each member of our family where we saw ourselves 10 years hence, I’m pretty sure that not a one of us would describe our current location.
10 years ago my 3 oldest would have told you that they envisioned themselves as having graduated from High School and living away from home!
I may have said something about getting my masters degree or being in the midst of building a new ( bigger and better!) home.
Notice I didn’t mention things like setting a goal not to spend more than $100.00 this month on groceries, or making my own bulgar or yogurt.
But life doesn’t always go as planned.
(How’s THAT for an understatement?)
College is expensive.
Jobs are scarce.
Scholarships are drying up.
Sometimes parents have to put all of their savings (college funds included) towards medical debt and trying to keep the youngest of your tribe alive.
Because now is NOT a good time to graduate from college with a huge load of college debt, the three previously mentioned oldest who entertained dreams of moving out for their college years……are still at home.
I’m proud of them for making hard choices now so that they can be debt free when they graduate.Â Learning to delay gratification is hard.
Just ask the millions of Americans who areÂ having to master this skill the hard way these days.
I’m a bit surprised at how many parents I know who charging their college aged kids money for both rent and food.
We don’t charge our kids, but we sure do expect them to pitch in with their time and talents to keep the wheels rolling around here. Â Â Â Helping with the cleaning and cooking and picking up Parker’s meds on their way home from work.Â Â Daily life skills kinda things.
My 18 year oldÂ gives my 11 year old private flute lessons, making the money we spent on HER lessons go twice as far.
The 23 year old helps the 21 year old write a resume.
Okay, so she actually wrote the whole thing for him after he got down on his hands and needs and begged.
It’s the process we’re focusing on here, folks.
Not to mention that the 21 year old really, really, really needs a job.
And while I know that living at home wasn’t the first choice for any of my oldest kids, itÂ hasn’t hurt them in the least.
When things get tough, families pull together.Â It’s what families do.Â Well, at least ours does.
For this I will be forever grateful.
And ( just in case you were wondering)Â hot chicks do indeed dig guys that invite them over to their parents’ house for homemade cookies and free movies from the library.
ps: The bigger (!)Â and better (!) homes?Â Really aren’t the things that true happiness is made of.