The Oil Business According To Steve!
Chasing Rabbits – Starting A New Chapter
Does your mind ever wander? Do certain life events cause you to stop and ponder? Most of my working days are spent talking to oil and gas royalty owners, discussing selling oil royalties, and helping with an occasional oil and gas appraisal.
My wife and I have four kids, the oldest born in 1990 and the youngest in 1996. Last month we dropped off “the baby” to begin her freshman year at Texas A&M. We said goodbye, drove home, and walked into a very, very quiet house. After 25 years of parenting, all our kids were gone. For me, the silence was heartbreaking.
Change is interesting, different people handle it in different ways. For my wife, an empty house has given her a sense of freedom that excites and inspires her. Don’t get me wrong, she is an awesome mom who is fully engaged with our kids. But after 25 years, to be unleashed from the daily responsibilities of “mothering” … well, if you didn’t know better, you’d think she won the lottery! Every day is a new opportunity to find out who she is, what she likes, and where she wants to spend her time. These are luxuries unavailable to a full-time mother of four, and the new freedom and endless possibilities excite her!
For me, the transition has been challenging. Our home was a gathering place for all our kids and their friends, and I loved the chaos and constant activity … friends popping in, firing up the grill to feed hungry teenage boys, or the late night run for ice cream with a carload of giggling little girls. Now, nobody’s popping in, no boys are screaming for burgers, and ice cream runs alone make me look creepy and fat. I miss my kids, I miss their friends, and I miss my sense of purpose.
But alas, time marches on! I guess I failed to read the fine print in the “Parenting Contract” … at-home parenting usually ends with forced retirement! Nobody asks your opinion, it just happens. In the grand scheme, I’m glad the kids are out of the nest. We raised them to be independent, and they are making us proud by using their skills and abilities to write their own stories.
Sometimes, like it or not, you start a new chapter. Perhaps a short season of melancholy and reflection is okay, but don’t forget to turn the page … I hear the next chapter is even better!