151: College Students Missing Home & It Is Time to Shine
Hello, my amazing friend. Thanks for stopping by!
This month's episode includes updates on my life - whoa it has been interesting, a new analogy, and much more - all the details and locations in the episode are below.
Your Empty Nest Coach
"Always take deep breaths - for your own sake. Process through your emotions of their (your child's) homesickness. What are you making it mean?"
Take a listen or read the full transcript at the bottom of this post.
⇓⇓⇓ More goodies below, too! Scroll down ⇓, so you don't miss anything! ⇓⇓⇓
Listen to @emptynestcoach 's podcast episode: College students Missing Home and It is Time to Shine #collegeparents #emptynestsuccess #newepisode
This Episode is Brought To You By
Episode Topics & Their Minute Markers
- 01:05 Quick Reminders
- 02:14 My Wish for You Today
- 02:44 New Things (personal)
- 09:55 New Things (Your Empty Nest Coach)
- 11:53 My Lessons Learned - It is Time to Shine
- 16:12 Ask Coach Christine: My Emerging Adult is Missing Home
- 18:41 Christine, Where are You?
- 19:37 Celebrating You and Your Wins
- 22:05 What's in Your C.E.O. of Your Life Toolbox?
- 23:24 Find the Funny
- 24:03 What I Wish My Parents Knew
- 24:31 Two Questions for You
- 25:53 Bloopers
- 26:02 Still Listening?
Send audio feedback to Coach Christine now: voicemail/text to 920-LIFEWIN (920-543-3946).
Questions for You:
- Is anyone in your life missing home?
- How bright are you shining your light into the world?
First Time Here? Try This Order of Episodes
- The Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast Trailer
- Series 1: Empty Nest Prep - starts at episode #3
- Series 2: The C.E.O. of Your Life - starts at episode #64 (Protector is introduced)
- Series 3: The C.E.O. Toolbox - starts at episode #88
- Last Episode: Celebration & Summer Break Time (#150)
- Podcast Episode: Sitting in the Simmer
- Hotline Video: College Student Missing Home
- Toolbox Episodes - The Conscious Effective Olympian Toolbox (#88) | What's Inside Your Toolbox? (#89) | Toolbox Foundational Tools (#96)
- GPS (Green Popsicle Stick) Episode
- CEO Analysis Tool/Illumination Mode: Part 1 | Part 2
- TikTok Wins | Instagram Wins
- What It is Like to Work With Coach Christine
- Find the Funny: Task Master New Zealand
* affiliate link to SupaPass - which powers our community! Should you purchase using the link, I make a commission.
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The Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, Episode 151
Christine: Hi, I’m Coach Christine. This is my podcast, it’s the Your Empty Nest Coach Podcast, and we’re on episode #151. I’m here to help mothers who are freaking out about the empty nest ahead as I guide them to feeling freaking awesome. I’m all about coaching you to become the C.E.O. of Your Life and in my world, C.E.O. stands for Conscious Effective Olympian. You’ll do this by leveling-up
your life in small increments - those small wins add up to big changes.
I appreciate that you pressed play on this episode today. Here we go…
[up beat music]
This podcast is my gift to you: a parent adjusting to the idea of an empty nest, or possibly a student who’s wondering how your parents are feeling about you heading out on your own. These podcast episodes will have a base of life coaching infused with reminders to cheer yourself on, and maybe with a dash of may alter-ego, Sally, the hotline video operator popping in from time to time. I’m here to remind you that you should be your own biggest fan.
Some quick reminders: You’ll find a ton of information, resources and more on my website: YourEmptyNestCoach.com. If you enjoy this podcast, don’t forget to follow it in your favorite podcast player. That way you’ll be notified when my next episode is released. A special thanks to our fabulous sponsor - SupaPass, who now powers our GPS Support Flock Community - more on that, later in this episode!
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Some other big topics you’ll find in this episode is a quick run down of the big changes that I have experienced in my life in the last three months - and, oh my goodness, it has not been a calm ride, that is for sure! [giggle] But, if you remember, one of my things to focus on this year has been to enjoy the journey - and I’m happy to report that despite a few needed emotional bumps, the journey IS being enjoyed. Of course, I also have a new analogy for you today and this one has to do with vehicle headlights; yay - we have some wins to celebrate; we’ll talk about what is in our C.E.O. toolbox, finding the funny and more!
If you wanna jump around in the episode, look for the time markers in the show notes.
[computer game level up music (short)]
My Wish for You Today
My wish for you today is that you may be present: where you are right now and through most moments of your day. Presence has the power to remove drama from your life and can you imagine your life with less drama and more time? I can tell you - it is freeing. I wish that you gain a bit more presence than yesterday and continue to work on it throughout the month ahead, my amazing empty nest friend!
[computer game level up music (short)]
New Things. New Things. New Things!
Well, I had a summer hiatus: this was the first ever (for me) in my podcasting career. I was nervous to take the podcasting break but I knew it was needed, and with all of the things that happened, I’m glad I did!
What happened? Where do I even start? Goodness gracious. Well, back when I recorded my last episode, in May, my husband and I had just moved, I was about to turn 50 and our daughter was about to graduate from college.
The move was successful.
I did turn 50.
Our daughter graduated from college and that was a BIG deal.
A side note: when my husband and I supported her attending college early - I can’t say we had a ton of support from the outside world during her consideration and then first couple of years of attendance at the college. I remember when she started, it did feel like those four years of out of state college were going to be a lifetime.
Well, they weren’t a lifetime after all - and the pandemic even added some extra “fun” in there, didn’t it?
Our daughter returned home in May, and she wasn’t sure what the next year was going to look like since the funds just weren’t available for her to attend the grad schools that she was accepted into. And this meant for a rough adjustment for her being back home with no plans for the future. And we all know how the pandemic helps with this, right? It was a fairly rough start to her summer - especially with my next piece of news that I’m going to share but - no worries - as of now she is thriving and that makes my heart incredibly happy. What else can you ask for as a parent?
This takes us to about June. Well, June happens: I turned 50 and 15 days later, my husband asks for a divorce.
Look, I’ll be honest, my mind had floated the idea of a divorce in our future, so it wasn’t a complete shock but the timing really caught me off guard - our daughter was about to turn 18 a few weeks later, I barely felt settled from the move, her return home, my new commute and so much more. I will be sharing more about what the divorce and what its meant in my life, how I’m doing with it and how it came about - in an upcoming episode, however, I’m doing my best to live in the present moment each day which means, I don’t exactly want to spend too much time thinking about it today.
I’ve been working really hard on following the things that I share in this podcast: watching my thoughts, keeping my thoughts, making sure that the thoughts I choose and the memories that I live in are ones that will move me forward in a positive way.
All that being said, please know that I’m doing incredibly well and my daughter is thriving too. All this Conscious Effective Olympian (or C.E.O.) of Your Life stuff that I talk about really works. More than once I’ve created an episode and then the universe decides to say, “Oh yeah, Christine, let’s see how you do with this….” [giggle]
The good news is that the thought-work has been a life-saver for me over the last few years, and this was just one more place to use it all again.
Now at home, my daughter and I are having a blast living together right now - we are a bit more like roommates due to her life stage which makes it super fun, and since I am well aware that I’ll be re-entering the empty nest sometime in the future, I’m fiercely enjoying her time here.
With all of these things I just mentioned from my summer, I figured why not throw one more big change - or ingredient into my stew - let’s simmer it out after all. Yes, that’s a reference to a prior episode - see my show notes.
I feel your energy: “Christine, what happened next?”
I did it. I resigned from my job at the college. Why? Because I was looking at heading back into the office five days a week and I no longer had an eleven minute walk to work - I had a 40-minute commute each way - and that was time taken from things I enjoy in life - like podcasting - and well - basically everything I enjoy in life. Also, due to my daughter’s unique education, she doesn’t have her own car and she’s still working on being a confident driver - it made no sense to have her stranded at home at this time.
I ran budget numbers over and over, and over, and over again. I finally bought this piece of software that I’ve wanted for years and it helped me [sings] so much. I’ll talk about that in another episode.
But, ultimately, I knew I would regret not being here for my daughter at this time, and I’d get my time back to work on my passion projects.
The one thing that was clear to me is that if I didn’t change my job, me (Coach Christine) would continue to have no time for bottom of the toolbox items and barely any time for even the top-of my life’s toolbox items. That’s not healthy. So, yes, I resigned.
It was bold and a bit crazy but it has made the other transitions my life is experiencing flow smoother than they would have had I stayed in that position. I now work VERY part-time at our local Lidl store - because it has me not at a computer, super active and at the end of my shift I get to do my grocery shopping. Oh, and part-time employees at Lidl get medical benefits. In case mm - you might find yourself in a similar situation and need to think about that. I had to think about it with the pending divorce and leaving my job. Yes, I am totally covering all my bases here. It’s also a little fun being at a job that is totally different from the work that I normally do and that is extremely active.
I use the Pacer app to track how far I walk, and a low activity shift, at Lidle, my pacer app tells me I manage the equivalent of almost 4 miles - a high activity shift is a heck of a lot more! It’s a job that also allows me to work on my presence - which is an added bonus.
Can you believe it? This takes me -mm - to about July of this summer, which, that month did include celebrating my daughter’s 18th birthday - and she chose to get a tattoo! She designed it herself and included my handwriting on it. She felt so good about signing her own waiver - it is an odd thing to be on a college campus but need your parent’s permission to go on a trip.
It makes my heart happy how excited she was about this - and since then she’s been totally on top of her own medical appointments which is incredibly rewarding as a parent.
So, this brings me to August and you would think that that would be enough for one summer. But no, we aren’t done. The universe helped me out a bit on this one and I was offered an amazing job opportunity but it’s so new, I’ll share more about that in my next episode - it, honestly, feels too good to be true at the moment.
I had a realization recently that a little over three years ago, I wrote down some things I wanted for future Christine and many of those have become a reality - I’ll share about those in the next episode as well so this one isn’t three hours long.
I’m sure there are many other things to share but with all of these big ones, I’ll just stop there. While I have managed to stay true to enjoying the journey most days (as I mentioned earlier), and I have felt peaceful the majority of the time, I do hope your last three months have been at least a tad calmer than mine!
Now for some new things specific to my Your Empty Nest Coach world:
The GPS Support Flock Community membership is back! Due to the summer I had, it was assembled a few months later than I had originally planned but I’m okay with that. The GPS Support Flock Community is powered by SupaPass and it is where you’ll find all of my resources going forward. I’m incredibly excited to offer it to you. While there are free resources available to those who register, if you choose to join our flock, you’ll have access to twice monthly group support coaching calls, all past and future workshops, weekly motivational messages, worksheets, activities and support for podcast episodes and more. All of this for only $27/month!
And one of last week’s motivational messages was titled: Where are you living? Are you ready for the surge in your life?
I’m incredibly proud of the offerings, and I’m excited for it to grow into the community that you need.
Should you be in a place where you don’t need the community support but you would like to support the podcast. There’s a place for you to buy me a cup of coffee - or two or three - to help make that happen! Coffee is a big energy boost for me!
Learn about all of the offerings I just mentioned - and more - by visiting my website YourEmptyNestCoach.com and clicking on the Community link.
Of course, that link will be in my show notes. Our next GPS Support Flock Community office hours or group coaching session is Wednesday, September 8th at 7:30 PM EST - I’d love to see you there!
As for this podcast, I’ll be releasing episodes monthly September through June. With more time between episodes, I’ll be focused on serving the GPS Support Flock Community in a way that dives deeper into the podcast episode content and more.
computer game level up music (short)]
My Lessons Learned
I have a 2007 Honda Odyssey. I do love my van, our family has moved quite often - for a variety of reasons and my daughter has even said to me that she feels more home in the van than our actual houses/apartments because it has been more constant in her life than any of our homes. It has been so good to our family.
Over the years, though, the headlights on my car had become super cloudy.
Honestly, I’m not sure how any light was coming through them at all- and I couldn’t get them clean via a carwash or some of my own muscle and cleaning supplies. I decided to have them restored. Honestly, I think it was the best $100 I have spent in a long time. It was wild to see the change! My car looks ten years younger - I guess I gave it a facelift - [giggle] - and when I drive at night, it’s amazing to be able to really see things.
Now, the cloudiness of the headlights didn’t happen overnight. I would have noticed that. It took time, it took weather, hours, days, months of driving for the headlights to begin to cloud over and eventually block light from escaping.
As mothers, we sometimes spend so much time thinking of our partners, our children, and others that our own light slowly begins to cloud over - the light being what I like to call our own internal GPS: who we are outside of our roles, outside of what we do for a living - or don’t do, outside of our actions we have taken that we identify with - actions that embarrass us and other actions that we are proud of.
When our light covers over - even when it happens unintentionally due to life - it makes it almost impossible for us to see where to head in life - what direction to go. It also, whether we know it or not, becomes impossible for others to see who we are and that’s because we cover ourselves up so much that we barely know who we are. This is how things get fuzzy in life and - we become identified with that clouded over version of ourselves - that light - and we begin to fiercely protect it because even though it is harder to see where we should be headed - we’ve adjusted to it and we’ve gotten used to it.
Then, one day, we might decide to do some cleaning, some work on ourselves. We might even begin being kind to ourselves - in the thoughts we think about ourselves, in the actions that we take to better ourselves and we begin to shine brighter. I imagine this as a dimmer switch where we slowly head toward illumination mode - I talk about this in prior episodes. This all takes tremendous work: to do the thought-clearing, to become your own biggest fan and to trust your internal GPS - after all, that light has been hiding for so long.
The wild part is that when things begin to clear - when restoration occurs - there are suddenly beams of light shining in our life that weren’t there earlier. And while these beams of light do help us to see better, they also have the potential to be more than your eyes can handle right away. It may even feel like you might have been better with the cloudy cover.
Time is needed to adjust to the growth, and discomfort as your light begins to shine again. Remember that your bright light - finding your true self - also could shine brightly for others who just aren’t ready for it yet. They might need to put some sunglasses on. And I’m not saying you need to hide your light - no, not at all - I would never tell you that, but I’d be doing you a disservice if I didn’t warn you that some in your life may need time to soak it all in. They may love your light but the initial shock of it might make them flinch. As you begin to grow - to show your light - to become the Conscious Effective Olympian of Your Life, trust that the true you - your internal GPS is what the world needs.
What you may notice is some are drawn to your light and others may find it startling because suddenly, you’re not fitting into the narrative that they’ve created about you, but ultimately (and this is really important) shining your light is what is going to illuminate your journey for your life ahead. Your journey. So I ask you, how cloudy is the cover on your internal GPS?
[computer game level up music (short)]
Ask Coach Christine
My emerging adult is at College and is homesick. What should I do?
Great question and I have a special shout out to my TikTok friend Mariadoor who suggested this topic for hotline video content - she also was kind enough to support the podcast through my new community. I just mentioned by buying me a cup of coffee - well, she did that! Thank you so much Mariadoor. I appreciate you - and so do my listeners!
Back to homesickness - I’ll call it missing home - as it isn’t really a sickness - it’s normal. While not ALL emerging adults experience it, for those who do, it could happen right away or it may kick in after a couple months of living on their own. It could be something like a meal, a holiday or a situation that brings on the emotions of missing home.
What can you do?
As much as possible, be available when they need to chat, and do your best to listen as you hold space for them. Hold yourself back from solving it for them.
I’ve mentioned this before but I like to imagine that we transition into a bit more of a coach role than a parent role as our emerging adults “emerge.” It reminds us as parents that we aren’t here to solve everything anymore but to be a resource and guide. I know (trust me) that it can be easier said than done, after all, it is really easy to jump into problem solving mode because while they may be 18, 28 or even older, they are always our baby.
Is it a good idea to run to campus and bring them home for the weekend? While it is always an option you can choose, I would hesitate to do that in the first month or so - unless there is an emergency - as doing that removes the opportunity for them to process through their emotions It also removes them from other students who are experiencing the same thing - which can be quite bonding to be stuck on campus together.
It’s a great time to create a care package.
Always take deep breaths - for your own sake. Process through your emotions of their homesickness. What are you making it mean? Use all of the tools I talk about on this podcast - they’ll help. Your emerging adult’s emotions of them missing home may last a few hours or a few days - just like us processing through our empty nesting emotions - there is no set timeline.
Oh, and I did create the hotline video for this. If you want to see it, link will be in my show notes.
[quirky music under segment]
Christine? Christine? Christine, where are you?
The best place to find me is in the GPS Support Flock Community, of course.
And believe it or not, I’m gearing up to speak at an in-person conference in October! She Podcasts Live ‘21 - I’ll be speaking about TikTok - what I like about it, how podcasters can use it even when they don’t have a huge audience, and more! My flight is booked, hotel is reserved, my dear podcasting friends will be meeting me there, and my daughter will be joining me! She does have her own plans for some of our time but what better place to spend time with your daughter than a place that has the goal to help women to share their voices with the world? It’s incredibly exciting! Should you want to know more about the conference, I’ll have a link in the bio - or feel free to reach out and ask away. I’d love to see you there!
[computer game level up music (short)]
Celebrating You and Your Wins [sound]
My win? I’m going with my ability to stay present is increasing exponentially daily and it feels great. I’m also celebrating that the GPS Support Flock Community is finally back to flying!
As for your wins, I’m happy to share recent wins from followers on TikTok and Instagram! See my show notes to click through to view these wins and cheer everyone on. As always, please forgive any mispronunciations:
First, from instagram NextchapterEmptyNest shares, I’ve been trying to decide what I want to do, how do I want to grow, what do I want to learn. My win is that I decided this week to sign up for a podcast course to learn more and grow my podcast. I’m so excited - first that I made a decision and now that have goals to meet.
LaurenJeanKinghorn, “Just launched my new podcast & YT channel, Fempreneurs Unite, with and interview and an awesome giveaway.”
On Tiktok, Olivia shares “moving away from home for college tomorrow. Excited and nervous about it.”
The.Elise.Diaries, “I listened to my body’s needs and ate intuitively! And I practiced my guitar and sang and I sound really good! It’s a win that I’m positive about me.
?? (double question mark) shares, “I went to college and had a panic attack but I got through by myself.
Gay Frog, shares with us “I managed to find my way home after I got on the wrong bus. I know it’s not big but I was scared and it was pouring down rain.”
Side note: No win is too small. They all count. They all build up to bigger things. And I’ll be honest, this doesn’t feel super small to me. You should be really proud of yourself.
Finally, Sunny day shares, “Going to look at a new school for autistic because I’m autistic.”
Thank you all for sharing your wins. Now my listener, I want you to take a couple of moments here and think of a recent win of yours: small - or big, that you can celebrate.Got it? Okay now, pump your hands in the air, do a little wiggle of joy and a small cheer. You should be really proud of yourself.
As a reminder, you can always share your win with us! You may send it to me in my DMs on social media, use my google voice number, yes, that’s in my show notes, or pop in the comments of my win videos posted on TikTok or Instagram: just be sure to add the microphone emoji.
[computer game level up music (short)]
What’s in your life’s toolbox?
As a reminder, these are things that bring you joy, or allow you to reset yourself in life in one way or another. Some are escapes that allow you the grace to have time until you’re able to process deeper or to allow your mind a bit of time to recalculate to what’s next; other things are tools and resources that allow you to do the deeper work - like working on your presence, finding a community (check out the GPS support Flock if you need one), listening to this podcast, or doing private coaching with me - or someone else. As always, I’d love for you to share what you use in your life’s toolbox for either moment in life - use that Google voice number to share, or DM me!
What’s in my toolbox?
Well, with the emotional ups and downs that I’ve had over the last few months, I have found myself enjoying a bit of Ben & Jerry’s ice cream. Not daily or anything like that but enough to think - you know what? I don’t usually eat ice cream and sometimes, I just want some ice cream and a sad movie. Yes! I did the ice cream and watch the movie Beaches thing. It was exactly what I needed in that moment. I enjoyed it thoroughly. I consciously chose to do it and decided that this is a great top of the toolbox item for me - used in moderation. Choosing to put it in my life’s toolbox has been kind of fun. It’s a really great tool to consciously use until I have time to really be able to dive deeper into my thoughts and everything. What kind of things do you use on emotional days?
Let’s find the funny!
[giggles from others]
Do you know about the show TaskMaster? I’m fairly certain I’ve mentioned it before on this podcast - and the New Zealand series is now available on YouTube. Holy Cow, the season two cast is a riot - and has provided me with many laughs recently. Laughter really is good for our souls.
[computer game level up music (short)]
What I Wish My Parents Knew
Showing up unexpectedly at college to check in on your kiddo and demand to be let into the dorm isn’t - uh - how shall we say - always appreciated. And, no, you don’t automatically have access to their school records if they haven’t given you permission. Please don’t go around your student and make a scene. It isn’t fun for anyone - especially your college student.
Two Questions for You
Question 1: Is anyone in your life missing home?
and Question 2: How bright are you shining your light into the world?
As always, I provide content to make you think, my empty nest friend.
My HOPE is that I’m able to provide you with thoughts that positively impact your life.
If you enjoy this episode please don’t forget to share it with others, it’s the best way to allow it to reach a wider audience. And of course, follow the show in your favorite podcast player!
I’ll be back with a new episode in October where I’ll share some lessons I’ve learned through my marriage separation, I’ll talk about the narratives we have for our lives, remind you about sunk costs and more.
My beautiful friend, life is no joke and you are managing it. While our life has moments that are amazing and beautiful, it also has heart wrenching and fear-inducing moments. This totality of life is what helps us to grow. Be sure that you are living in the moment you are currently in - rather than living in the past or the future. Because missed moments are sometimes missed growth opportunities.
You’ve got this. Enjoy the journey and never forget that you are amazing. Chat next time!
Are you still listening?
Take a deep breath in my friend. Let the air out and as the air exits your lungs, let go of negative energy, let go of negative thoughts about yourself and as you breathe in again fill your body with positive energy and only loving thoughts about yourself.