The Party We Missed
Sadie Hawkins Day

Empty Bedrooms

My parents sold the house I grew up in while I was away at college and moved into an apartment.  It was a modest house in a modest neighborhood, but to me, it was home.  I felt betrayed.  Back then, unmarried women were likely to live with their families, but I would have none of that, at least not in an apartment.

I remember the day I told my father that I planned to move out.  It was about a month after my graduation. We were sitting on my bed in the new apartment.  It was the the bedroom furniture I grew up with, but it wasn’t the same.

I told Dad that I was moving to Boston because I needed to be on my own.  He was devastated, but he accepted the inevitable. 

I vowed then that my husband and I would not sell the house our kids grew up in while they were still in college.  And we didn’t.  When we did sell it, we bought another, smaller house that had a bedroom for each of them, just in case they needed to live at home. 

In our empty nest, I finally understood how my father felt during that long-ago conversation on my old bed in my parents’ new apartment.

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