It’s finally time for our empty nest

Published 9:08 am Thursday, May 23, 2024

By Les Ferguson Jr., 



Six. Read ‘em and weep. Between my wife and I, we have raised six young men.  That’s a lot of teenage angst, outgrown tennis shoes, cars, and high insurance bills. As far as groceries are concerned, we should have been awarded stock options from Kroger. 

Like I said, six. Can you imagine how many pizzas we’ve seen consumed— sometimes with the sound and speed of a turbo-charged vacuum cleaner?

Raising six boys hasn’t been without its challenges. My daddy used to say that every gray hair on his head could be directly attributed to something I did. At this stage of my life, I completely understand. 

Like I said, there are six boys. Of the five living, one is a nurse, another is a civil engineer, one is pursuing his passion for the city in the Big Apple, another is a graphic designer with the talent to build anything he wants to, and one just graduated from High School this past Thursday. He is determined to play college football, and I wouldn’t bet against him. 

Six boys. All different. All with their own quirks. All strong and capable. I’m proud of them and look forward to seeing all they accomplish in the years ahead. 

Last week’s graduation was surreal in many respects. I know it’s cliche to say, but surreal really fits the bill. It seems like I’ve spent a lifetime raising boys. I’ve certainly made lots of mistakes along the way. My dad used to tell me that I didn’t come with an owner’s manual. Once again, I recognize the wisdom of my daddy. 

It’s a little bit sad to see the youngest graduate, but overall, I’m happy to see my guys moving forward in life. And if you can handle a change in emotion or just the direction of this column, please hear my heart… Woo-hoo!

Imagine that shouted with energy, zeal, excitement, and passion: Woo-hoo! 

It’s finally empty nest time! We did it. We made it! No more school lunches, no more impromptu meetings with a principal, no more struggles to wake a kid up in time to catch the bus or drive to school, no more agonizing over grades! (I know college is up next but give me a few months to live this dream!)

What will the empty nest look like for us? That remains to be seen, but I am ready for this next stage of life! 

I’m reminded of God’s word to Israel: “Look, I am about to do something new; even now it is coming. Do you not see it? Indeed, I will make a way in the wilderness, rivers in the desert.” (Isaiah 43:19 CSB)

God bless you in all of life’s transitions!