I am resetting an empty-nester’s life.

I worked over 20 years in the apparel industry. I worked so much I had two daughters who didn’t know me, andI didn’t know them. I was traveling a lot and working long hours — part of the job requirement. I remember one time I was leaving from an airport on a work trip. My husband and my one daughter took me. They both came to say goodbye, but when I was leaving my daughter went crazy. She was hanging on to my legs, hysterically crying and wouldn’t let go. I tried not to cry, I had to get her off because I had to board the plane.

When I got on the plane I wondered, what is this all about? It dawned on me that I couldn’t do this anymore. I wanted to change but I didn’t do anything right away. My career was in full swing.

I decided to take a career sabbatical. I felt that if I was going to bring two people into this world, I have to help make them good citizens. That’s my responsibility. Luckily, my husband was understanding and we could afford to let go of one salary, which isn’t easy. 

Now that my kids are independent and I’m an empty-nester, I need to find my mission in life. I loved my career and the creative and business part that came with it. I want to see what I can do with my skill set. I used to teach at FIT and now I’m doing on-call consulting for department stores. But I need more. I need a challenge. I have this fire in me to do something that is meaningful to me. That’s my reset.

Photo courtesy of Mary Ann D’Urso.