Every parent goes through the unique experience of watching their babies grow up. Before you know it, they're up and talking, then going to school, then the alarming stage where they start dating and driving. Just when you've adjusted enough to happily see them off to prom, your little one has fully grown up and is ready to head off to college, their first job, and eventually, you’ll be visiting your kid’s first apartment.
The Challenges of an Empty-Nesting Parent
Empty-nesting can be hard on a parent, but at the same time, you also get the sweet satisfaction of knowing that you did a good job. If your baby is mature and confident enough to buy their own groceries and get themselves to and from their new career, your work is done. At least until they come home for the holidays and want a little last-minute parenting on why their laundry keeps turning pink. But the real question is...how do you see them off?
Most parents who find themselves in the empty-nesting situation are compelled to offer just a few more tips, one last hug, and a stack of housewarming gifts. Does your grown child have enough pans to cook healthy foods at home? Clean dishes to eat them off of? What about a real bed to sleep on?
Accepting Independence Takes Time
Most parents will never forget the first time they visited their grown child's apartment. Whether it was spotless or a mess, alone or with roommates, you can always spot something indicating that your baby isn't quite done growing up. No young adult has everything perfect in their first year living on their own, whether or not they had a few years of college to practice. While you understand and remember your own years living on noodles and pizza or being inept at the laundry, the most difficult thing a parent can see is that their child has been sleeping on an air mattress or an old futon sourced from goodness-knows-where.
Your first instinct may be to drag your son or daughter to a department store and send them back to their little apartment with a towering stack of 'essentials', but as a good parent, you know better. It's important that your baby learn to stand on their own two feet and develop their own independent style of adulthood. But you can probably get away with one really amazing house-warming gift. Some parents go with kitchenware, others pack their children off in a wonderful set of sturdy luggage, some even choose a sweet-natured pet so their grown children won't be lonely. But you're looking for something essential that will help your child every day and make them feel that you have faith in their newfound independence.
Giving The Gift of Adult Sleep
So how do you say "I love you, good luck" without seeming too clingy or too distant? What can you give your child that will last for years, follow them from home to home, and remind them that you believe in them? If your child is sleeping on a couch, futon, air mattress, or a questionably sourced mattress left by some previous roommate, the perfect answer could be their very own real adult bed.
Teenagers can sleep anywhere. They sleep on stranger's couches, the floor, in trees, and on top of wide brick fences if they really need a nap but as your child begins to truly become an adult and build their career, they will need a real bed. And this is something that most young adults are not at all prepared to arrange for themselves. Their entire lives, they have slept in a bed in your home or a bed in their dorm, or on whatever they could find. Gifting your child with their first piece of real adult furniture is the perfect way to help them start down the path to building their own collection of personal furnishings and, eventually, starting their own household.
A bed doesn't have any clingy parenting connotations as other gifts might. Kitchenware might suggest that you're judging their eating habits, and laundry or bath items have a clear suggestion that the hygiene of their new independent life might be lacking. But a bed simply says that you want them to get good adult sleep, and perhaps that you'd rather they didn't sleep on the floor.
The next question is what kind of bed you want to gift and how you're going to get that gift through the door of their tiny apartment.
Skipping the Mattress Store
Fortunately, a lot has changed since you were a young adult starting out in your first apartment. You don't have to visit a mattress store or fend off pushy salespeople to choose the right bed for your child. The modern e-Commerce trend has made luxurious bed-in-a-box solutions available and they can be delivered right to your child's apartment building. With the clever application of a dolly and a little assembly on-site, your perfect housewarming gift doesn't even need to be transported in your vehicle or require a trip to some store. All you need is a little research and some very careful timing of your next visit.
A Housewarming to Remember
For most parents, a visit to your kid’s first apartment is experimental at best. You don't know what to expect so you come equipped to buy them a nice dinner and find out just how well or poorly they're getting on without you. But your second visit, that's your chance to throw your baby a little housewarming party they'll never forget. Let them know that you've got one final gift to give and that the two of you can work on it together when it arrives. If your timing is just right, you can make sure that the bed arrives just before or after you do. Once the enormous package is delivered, you and your child can spend the evening putting together the frame, loading up the mattress, and fitting on a set of brand new sheets in their favorite color.
Whether you made your gift a surprise or planned the whole thing out discussing firmness and size with your child beforehand, this is one housewarming gift they will never forget. And, of course, they’ll take it with them for years enhancing each new home until they are finally ready to take that big adult step and choose their next bed all on their own.For more information on how to find the perfect bed for your grown child, contact us today.