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Good Stuff in May 2023 ✨
A monthly roundup of links that caught my eye, ear and/or heart
Welcome to Parent of Adults, a newsletter for parents about life beyond the empty nest. Subscribe! Let’s keep each other company as we stumble toward whatever’s next. 🤷🏽♀️
I’m at the tail end of my two-week road trip with Mom. By the time we get to our hotel each night we’re beat, so we sack out and read or stare at our phones. While Mom gasps at news headlines or plays solitaire or laughs at dog videos (there can never be too many dog videos), I catch up on my Substack feed, do the daily Wordle and scroll Instagram.
Last weekend my feed was wall-to-wall graduation pictures and I’m HERE FOR IT. I love seeing my friends’ kids in their caps and gowns. What am I saying — they’re not kids anymore! I’ve spent years watching them grow up so when I witness this pinnacle moment it’s like
Are you the parent of a grad? If so, CONGRATULATIONS. What a moment! What a milestone! Climactic and bittersweet and gorgeous and heartbreaking and a lot! Are you a hugger? Can I hug you? Or just smile at you from over here?
Part of why I created this newsletter was because I didn’t have a good place to put all those feelings when my own kids grew up and went their ways. I want this to become one of those places for you and anyone else who’s wading through these interesting waters.
Do you know someone who should know about this newsletter? Encourage them to sign up for a free subscription.
OK! Onto the links.
Choose your version of success
Graduation season nudges many of us to revisit our own path and realign it with who we are now. This musing byis full of acceptance and wisdom.
If success is in the eye of the beholder, choose the version that suits you and your life as it is, and the rest will figure itself out.
“Parents of old babies…what have you learned?”
Jenny Lawson’s kid, Hailey, is heading to college in the fall. Jenny asked her readers for advice and BOY HOWDY did they come through! Pan for gold in the comments of this post.
Ends and beginnings at The Bloggess
You lead, I’ll follow shared the relief of shifting into the role of “follower” and letting her college-age daughter lead.
On following in
I love howused “decoupling” to describe the gradual loosening of her tightly-woven relationship with her soon-to-fly daughter and the gentle release of previous ways of parenting.
I’m still processing the loss of writer Heather Hamilton (Armstrong) and the tributes in response to her death. Their intimacy speaks to how many lives she touched with her pioneering blog, Dooce, mine included. Mourning Heather’s loss has given form to the collective grief over the loss of the hopeful, interconnected online parenting community of the early aughts.
Here’s a sampling of tributes. If you know of more or if you’ve written about Heather, please post links in the comments.
(Content warning: suicide.)
We Live in the World Heather Armstrong Made by Elizabeth Angell for Romper
Casey Coombs reflects on the early aughts, mommy blogging, and the death of Dooce by Casey Coombs for Indymaven (thanks for the pointer, Jyl)
A group of Heather’s friends established two separate 529 funds for the individual educational needs of Heather’s children, Leta and Marlo. Here are the details + links to the donation sites if you’d like to contribute.
My favorite Instagram post in May
That’s all for now, friends. I hope you have a wonderful week. The next time you hear from me I’ll be writing to you from my own desk! I’m ready. I love travel, but I also love coming home.