Hi. I’m Kim Dushinski. I have been an empty nest mom since the fall of 2015 when my only child, Anya, went to college. Having been a very involved parent when she was growing up, I was pretty sure it would just about kill me when she left home. At a few points along the way I would actually cry just thinking about her moving out.

This picture was after we had just seen the movie Up. We stole our 3D glasses and took this picture on our front porch. We had lots of these adventures together. I knew at the time how great they were, but I didn’t know how much I would miss them.

It was a huge surprise to me that I didn’t completely fall apart the moment my daughter moved into the dorm. Yes, it was pretty rough but I was proactive and did a few key things to help me prepare, make it through Parent Orientation and week-by-week through her first year of college. I made it without falling apart and have continued to be proactive about building my life.

I’ve worked to understand that just because my job of parenting my kid at home is over, it doesn’t mean she doesn’t still need me. It also doesn’t mean that the best part of my life is over. Yes, it was great when she was young. And it is great now.

This was us grabbing frozen yogurt during her freshman year. At least we didn’t steal anything on this adventure – lol.

Empty Nest Handbook is my way of helping other empty nest parents through this time of transition. Let’s build our best life now.