Aug 5, 2015
What I Realized About My Family

Mother of 14 children Mrs. Toby Lieder of Sydney, Australia says she had a sudden a realization about her family.

By Toby Lieder

Slowly I gaze around my home that was once filled with laughter, music, and a big mess, and I wonder - where did it all disappear?

Just yesterday, they were here, and today they're almost all gone. Gone to their own homes in their own paradise. Gone to their own kiddies jumping on their beds now, and finding half filled sour curdled milk baby bottles under their beds.

No more morning rush to beat the clock to catch the school bus while sending 8 kids out of the house at once! No more rushing home before 4:00 pm to be home for the crew that arrive at my doorstep with starving tummies and wondrous tales to share! You mean, I can keep shopping till I drop?

I can even lay down at any given time I desire, with no one looking for me and harassing me to get up and make them toast and peanut butter "now!"

I can even eat a whole sandwich without having to share any part of it with anyone! Because no one is home to ask!

I can even polish down a bag of chips without being disturbed! Never mind reading a complete newspaper without one interruption!

Sundays are now a walk on the beach instead of busy with kiddy picnics in the park that take 2 hours to get ready for.

But...You know, I never knew that what I once wished for can really come true.

Oh how I once wished for the quiet peace of sleeping uninterrupted.
How I thought that was never to be! But, I must confess, my friends, the time has come and I can sleep like there’s no tomorrow, with no one tugging on my blankets to take them to the toilet, or sing them back to sleep from a nightmare.

Oh yes! I can sleep now like there’s no tomorrow.
I can eat my chocolate and leave it on the table and it will still be there 3 hours later. I know it sounds like a fantasy, but the time does actually come when you can clean the floor and it actually stays clean for 2 days straight!

I always thought that raising kids would last forever.
I always thought that putting kids to bed at night would never end.
I always thought I would never ever get a good night sleep ever again!

But, I must confess, the time has come - and I don't like it at all.

It's not what I imagined, being alone at home. It is no fun just having pictures on the walls to stare at when you feel the pangs of hunger for having your good ol’ family back to the way it was.

I never thought it would come so fast. I never thought it would be so lonely!

It was just yesterday when I lay in bed with one child on one side of me, another on the other side, one across my feet, and the youngest on top of me, all of us under one big warm blanket, listening to my bedtime stories while falling asleep, all together.

It feels like the tape was put on fast forward, to a place where I am right now! I am not meant to be finished my job! It was meant to go on forever and ever! I really never knew it would actually halt like a short stop on a busy road. Nobody warned me. I am still looking in the rooms at night to see if everyone’s asleep, but nobody’s there. Hey! Where did my family go?

It felt like just yesterday when I came to watch the kids concerts and plays in school. I took all the photos and videos. Now it's time to dust them off, take them off the shelves and go down memory lane, and sort out yesterday’s memories.

What I am realizing is, that if I had to do it all over again, I wouldn’t wish for the end so fast. I would consume each and every day as if it were the only day I have.

I know, I am blessed with over 22 grandchildren, and married 7 out of 14 children already B”H.

But here I am, sitting in a rocking chair, knitting for my grandchildren. But am I ready to enter Bubbyland? Gevald, I am still 17! How can a 17 year old have so many grandchildren! Where did the time fly?

Then it hit me. This is what I began to realize.

Hashem has blessed us with being the caregivers for His children that He blessed us with. He entrusted me, and my dear husband, with 14 souls, and said, “Here are My gifts to you to take care of for a while, till they grow old enough to take care of themselves (when exactly?).

They are just temporary visitors in your home that I trust you to educate and discipline, according to the ways of the Torah.

You will hopefully do such a good job that by the time they are 18+ they will be fully grown responsible independent human beings that will follow the right way."

Hashem gifted us with these souls to make a difference to them to carry on the torch of yiddishkeit, love, for a better future.

I always thought I owned them, since I gave birth to them, dressed them, fed them, took them to doctors and hospitals, appointments, and never ending changing diapers, staying up at night, crying babies, endless shopping, birthday parties, Shabbosim, friends over, send them to camps, to seminary, getting them married, being there for their first births, helping with their kids…. and the list goes on.

I came to realize, that each child is a world of their own, and are entitled to a universe of their own.

Hashem ‘loaned’ them to us for a short while, until there comes a time for us to ‘let go’ and say, "we did our job, and now we are here to assist you whenever you need us (forever), but to assist you, and not to impose on you."

There is a time to let go, and watch our kids blossom on their own. That is what we planted seeds for all our life. To sit back one day and watch the flowers blossom in the garden.

Now I must accept the time has come to sit back and relax, smell the roses, and hear the birds chirping.

I'll water my plants from time to time, only when asked to.

To all my younger friends still on the rollercoaster of raising little kids, I convey to you a most important message: Stop, breathe, relax, laugh, and have tons of fun with your family, because soon, it’ll be rocking chair time!





Most Read Most Comments


Opinions and Comments
1
im gonna cry
im so getting sad, and my baby is 9 months old.
(8/6/2015 12:20:37 AM)
2
great article
Thank you for reminding us to love every minute!
(8/6/2015 12:37:08 AM)
3
LOVE IT
Yes Cherish every moment with your kids.
When they are small.
(8/6/2015 12:37:40 AM)
4
Love it
but no matter what we do we can't make time last forever!!
(8/6/2015 12:41:33 AM)
5
Loved reading
Thank you for writing!
(8/6/2015 12:46:23 AM)
6
Sarah kats
Beautiful! So happy to have spent a year with your family
(8/6/2015 12:49:58 AM)
7
Kol Hakavod!
Great piece! I'm in the same position as the writer.
But to #1: Don't worry. I used to cry over articles like these when my baby was 9 months old. I think part of the tears were because it was SO HARD being a mother with a young baby. The writer is making an important and vital point. But the fact is, life is hard at EVERY stage in Golus. Enduring decades of insufficient sleep (including waiting up for teens who came home dangerously late at night...) was nearly impossible for me to deal with. I thought my brain was gone forever. (Finally I have my brain back B"H and am loving it!...) Coping with the empty nest makes me lonely and weepy, too, but part of that is because I now have to enter uncharted territory: I have to do my best to serve Hashem without the constant demands of making toast and peanut butter "right now," and all the other great examples the writer gave. In a way it's easier to have the structure of a big family with little people pulling at you constantly from every direction. Now that structure is gone, and the youthful energy of being 17 is just not the same, even though we are 17 in our heads, for sure, with a sense of humor that's had m-a-n-y more years to become rich and mellow! We bubbies have to reinvent ourselves, in a way, and that's really, really hard. But I'm not 100% sure it's harder than four kids in the bed with me... Wishing everyone, including me, the strength to cope at whatever stage they are in. Moshiach Now.
(8/6/2015 1:11:21 AM)
8
Friend of the family
Thank you for your incredible writing, this article is so beautiful and a true reminder not to take anything for granted and cherish every moment! I personally know and are friends with a few of your children, they are amazing humans, doing incredible things in the world! Hashem should continue to bentch you with an abundance of brochos and nachas from your whole family!
(8/6/2015 1:23:47 AM)
9
Yay Bubby!
World's best bubby
We love you!
(8/6/2015 1:25:25 AM)
10
Nice story ... Going to kiss my little ones more
Proud of you and happy for you ..... You made a mission as a mom , I don't think so ... Maybe it's a quiet time now in your house but when the family is gathering to YomTov with all the extended family .... Or when you have a full family picture from the wedding - it's priceless ...
Wish you to marry off all your kids soon and have more grand children and only nahes from all your huge family
(8/6/2015 1:36:04 AM)
11
Bubby time!
Loved the article! B"H my children are married and out of the house but I still get that empty nest feeling. I guess that is why they say that cleanliness (no one there to mess it up right away)is next to loneliness!

May we only have yiddishe chassidishe nachas from our
children.

(8/6/2015 2:08:42 AM)
12
Dear Toby
I know exactly what you mean Boruch Hashem have been zoche to marry off all of them. But I feel like a lost soul. Completely displaced and cant find my place anymore. Sincerely yours, Out of Commission PS I wish is knew the answer
(8/6/2015 2:16:05 AM)
13
poignant
It is so scary but true. How we wish we can turn the hands of the clock back. If this encourages one more family to grow by even one more precious, noisy, messy child, it accomplished a whole world.
(8/6/2015 2:18:15 AM)
14
Check out the blog
Momof14.blogspot.com

Excellent fun!
You will laugh
You will cry!
(8/6/2015 2:19:03 AM)
15
Beautiful and so true!
(8/6/2015 2:30:02 AM)
16
Oh yesss!
You brought tears to my eyes.
(8/6/2015 2:56:15 AM)
17
Oh how I relate
I cried as I devoured each word. I am now working hard at enjoying each grandchild and remembering each detail and thanking Hashem every second that He gave me the strength to endure and that He blessed me with my blessings!!!
Great article!
Hubby's out there hop your children get thru the challenging days so they can enjoy the blessings... You know what a rough day or week is.... Our children need us.... Our role is just different now.
Hashem should help us so we can help them be the perfect parents
Only nachas and simchadika simchos.
(8/6/2015 3:00:13 AM)
18
Sarah MH, aka mini minor!
Thanks mrs. Lieder for the wonderful year of seminary that I cherish forever! As I read this important article, I could hear ur voice, see your facial expressions, and had so many wonderful memories of your home and family! Ur the best!
This is a great reminder during the summer months when we baruch hashem spend soooo much time with our kids!
(8/6/2015 3:26:22 AM)
19
I tried, but...
Loved every minute, but it is hard when they grow up and it doesn't work as you expected. They don't go 'through the system' or the shidduch doesn't come...and they don't move on as you would have hoped.
(8/6/2015 3:32:46 AM)
20
well done
Amazing xx
U should write a book!!?
(8/6/2015 4:04:26 AM)
21
yos
nice
(8/6/2015 4:17:19 AM)
22
Time flys
Beautifully written.. I'm about to have my first baby and already sad to think that time can go so fast.. I will try my best to cherish every moment.. Thank you for sharing!
(8/6/2015 4:32:13 AM)
23
Crying...
Relate too well, though I'm in between; kids almost all on their own but not blessed with grandchildren yet. longing for at least a fraction of what you have BH been blessed with. slowly I'm sure Hashem will help..for the time being i ought to learn how to knit?!
(8/6/2015 4:33:52 AM)
24
Beautiful!
Holding my baby right now and appreciating every second
(8/6/2015 5:11:28 AM)
25
True!
Very true !
Thank you
Feel the same!!!
(8/6/2015 5:27:19 AM)
26
Velvel
And all of this was done when there were no long day cares this is what youre missing out on today. Cherish each moment
(8/6/2015 5:33:27 AM)
27
Love it.
Great article and you should have much nachas from all your children and grandchildren and great-grandchildren one day.
(8/6/2015 5:58:56 AM)
28
To all your grandchildren
Bobbie wants you to relieve her from boredom.
Camp Leider is open. Haha
(8/6/2015 6:29:56 AM)
29
a wise woman
A very wise woman told me before I married: Make sure your relationship with your husband is always #1. Make sure that no matter how much you love and invest in your children, when they leave the nest you will be able to live the rest of your lives on a honeymoon period.
My first child is still a baby and im only in my 20's but I am working towards that every day :)
(8/6/2015 6:35:52 AM)
30
sonia Lipschitz
Just wonderfuL
(8/6/2015 6:36:37 AM)
31
Toby
You are an amazing person
(8/6/2015 6:41:09 AM)
32
Only one sister Toby
It wasn't just your children that you took such wonderful care of, it was a special experience being your younger brother. You were barely a teenager when I was born, you added a special sweetness to my younger years, stories, walks, jokes, the nosh, teaching me the ways of life, and just spending time with me. I will always cherish that.

Realize just how good you really are!
(8/6/2015 6:52:39 AM)
33
Been there and now...
I am also there.
B H raised and married off 8 beautiful shluchim.
Now my grandchildren occupy our warm home.
This is a great time to continue our our learning, volunteering and joining cheded organizations
There are stages in life and giving married children good advice is commendable
Invite your friends who are in the same situation and have a lunch and learn in you home
Yes it is lonely at times but fill it up with constructive activities
(8/6/2015 7:07:42 AM)
34
Made me cry
I'm one of those mothers who's waiting for them to grow up, because it's hard and bec I don't have a second to breathe... And I KNOW even now that I will regret it one day... But I can't control it
(8/6/2015 7:08:00 AM)
35
#29
A Very wise woman told you make sure your relationship with your husband is #1?
I assume that same wise woman would say that make sure that your wife is #1 as well
I beg to differ….. all these comments are so la di da … yes we all need to Thank Hashem , Yes the Golus is soooo long .
All these Platitudes…
There is an old Yiddishe Vort … Until you get to the Kretchme you also need a drink so let's talk a little more then just the same old Platitudes….
Lets talk about our CHILDREN….. all the mesirus Nefesh Parents have for them……I do not think for one second a young couple having babies year after year… think at all about they are a "Present from Hashem"… yes of course deep down they "KNOW " it…
If true to be told People get married for various reasons….among many…. Don't want to be alone … social pressure (whether they are ready or not) and have kids to be there for them when they get old…and yes to do HASHEM'S WILL….among many various and numerous reasons….
I have and still am a wonderful parent worked like a dog for my family … took and take care of my children even after they are married many years…. on Shlicus etc….
By this time you may be asking yourself… What is this persons point…??
I too am experiencing this feeling of being lonely….No matter how good your relationship with your spouse is there is a connection that a parent has with their child ,that love ,,, that is special and unique above all other Loves within family Life..
and when that child "young" child marries whether in years or "young" in maturity …. and leaves their parents home…. leaves physically to start their own lives… and leave "emotionally" as well…. are Yoitzeh with phone calls and visits..but have no problem "taking"…. THAT in my opinion is wrong NOT the way of our parents grandparents the "OLD" true and tried Heimshe Yiddishe European way… Where Parents even when the children got married still took their parents feelings into account understood the Mesiras Nefesh their parents had for them…. and now realize that their are times in their Married lives when it is time ti show their parents that they TRULY love them …. not just by sending pictures in that SNAPSHOT albums mugs etc…. but showing them that they are there for them as needed… understanding that it is not a matter of parents not being able to let "GO" but life is not that simple as AMERICANS think it is….
That the greatest lesson one can show their OWN Children is the DERECH ERETZ … that Mummy and Tatty still give their parents….
I grew up seeing both my PARENTS giving the UTMOST derech Eretz to their parents …. and to each others parents…. we children admired it never felt unloved or anything of the sort… but felt Bobie and Zaidy were part of our family Their Dayos counted… etc
Toby …. you wrote a wonderful article …..just another perspective on the whole "Empty Nest "
Your Cousin…….
(8/6/2015 7:35:58 AM)
36
Mom of many, B"H
I have 14+ children, B"H. None of them are married yet and most live at home. I was told in the early years of my mommyhood to cherish every moment! I feel that I have and continue to do that. This article was so well written. Thank you!
I cherish every child, B"H, and thank Hashem for all of our gifts.
(8/6/2015 7:44:32 AM)
37
Toby ! What a beautiful life you are having
We are all on this trip together , Hashem has treated us with so much fun and happiness , we worked hard , we tried our best , the nicest thing is we duplicated ourselves into many new lives , Our Children ! Then our Grand children , we are being duplicated again and again , îä æøòå áçééí àó äåà áçééí
This is the greatest gift from Hashem !
Generations of Toby's and Yankel's for many generations to come , pat yourselves again for the greatest treasure you both possess you put all your energy into bringing such a beautiful family as the Rebbes shluchim and army .
All in all you did it ! à çñéãéùò ùèåá òì ôé èäøú ä÷åãù
(8/6/2015 8:01:03 AM)
38
Thank you so much for all your comments and acknowledgements
All I can say to you my dear friend is,
Seize the moments you have now
I am talking now to the young ones that are struggling with a handful of kids of all ages!
Seize the moments of joy that pass through your home each day 😀
Seize and grasp those hysterical moments that make you laugh so hard and write them down in a happy family journal for one day😀
Did you know that you are creating history right now for your family!
Did you know that you are creating memories as we speak for your kids!
Stop look and listen and do some special things with your kids to make their childhood a most memorable experience!
Idea one: Each kids birthday should be a "date" with their parents. The child showers , gets all dressed up in their shabbos clothes and has a date with their parents that eve of their birthday to their favourite chosen restaurant/place.
On that date the child is asked to share 3 things they wish for in life (now this is suitable for kids from ages 3-30
Kidding aside. These special birthday dates are planting a memory so very special to last a lifetime!😀
2. Private Time Bedtime; to spend ten minutes each eve with each child (2 hrs!) talking to them about their day. No criticism permitted only positive talk. The bond is an enormous investment for both parent and child. From when the child is 2 till 22 If we give them that private time each day we are almost guaranteed to have an open communication especially in the teenage years when it's so difficult to connect to the very kids we love and care for so much. But if we start this habit from very young the kids will be so used to it that it won't be unusual to them to chat with their parents and have that trusting bond when they are older!😀
(8/6/2015 8:19:14 AM)
39
to #19
To #19 with sincere understanding:
I understand only two well your experience and difficulties as the loving and devoted mother that I am sure you are.I do not write with empty words, but also share the same mothering experience. I do not usually comment on these forums, but felt compelled to answer your "still small voice" among the comments written in response to this article. Please allow me to give strength to you,as I have been through many trying times with our beautiful children within a large family,k:ah.
Please know as we know only too well from sources in Tanach, that the Ribono shel Olam gave us beautiful neshamos to raise to the best of our ability and it is He and only He who gives them their strengths and abilities or chas v'shalom the lack of tools to cope with life's challenges. You, no doubt have ,and will continue to be their loving and devoted mother, and may Hashem bentch you with much strength, tremendous nachas and the best of health for you and your family. To all of the readers of this article and the author, may you have continued nachas and enjoy all that Hashem has given you and savor each moment of yiddishe nachas .
(8/6/2015 8:30:14 AM)
40
grand children
Reb Yankel Lipskier (770 gabai that build the 770 aron kodesh) once went over to the Rebbe by a farbrengen to say lechaim and tell the Rebbe that his 10th einikl was born. the Rebbe told him "àééðé÷ìàê öééìè îòï ðéè"
(8/6/2015 8:48:31 AM)
41
to number 13
Have one more baby? And who will pay their tuition? Don't tell me it will all work out And to trust in Hashem when my children sit at home confused because there cheder will not let them in until we pay more tuition which we just don't have. I would appreciate my children more and actually enjoy them if I wasnt struggling under a mountain of tuition.
(8/6/2015 8:57:26 AM)
42
take advantage of every stage in your life
Every phase in our life is a gift. We have a choice to do what ever we want to do with it. Empty nest? That means we can spend more time davening like a mentch. More time to go to Shiurim. More time for Chesed. The main thing is to keep active with positive things until we get Moshiach here, NOW!!
(8/6/2015 9:04:29 AM)
43
Love this article
Such beautiful, honest writing!!

I love the part which you write that 'children are a loan from Hashem'. So true! You can feel fulfilled that you did your part so beautifully and set up to continue on with their families...
(8/6/2015 9:06:46 AM)
44
Your Article Resonates with me except for one thing....
As a Mum who "waited" several years before being blessed with the miracle of Motherhood, I never thought about the "empty nest." I was so grateful for every minute. I therefore tell each young mothers that while it is very hard, the years fly by, all too fast and then one is in the position that Mrs. Lieder and I are in at present: we look at the photos, etc. and wonder where the years have gone?

Yes, our children are on loan to us from Hashem, but I still miss my full house, as well as the kochot that I used to have when I was in charge!

Penina Metal
(8/6/2015 9:24:43 AM)
45
safta s
All true but each chapter gets better. I am lucky to enjoy my children and grandchildren cause BH we all live near each other in eretzisrael. In addition, i have a little sweet girl dog which keeps me company and that is wonderful.
(8/6/2015 10:09:56 AM)
46
33 and 42....totally agree
Great article and enjoyable all the participation. Some of my children more then others, i constantly felt that they are here to do the Eibershter s rotzon, and brought them up with my heart full of intention for them to be ibergegebn to the Rebbe... And the results are BH gebentched in all ways!
(8/6/2015 10:17:45 AM)
47
Thanks for sharing!,
So wonderful to see so many comments on such a positive beautiful article! MoveD to tears, very touching
(8/6/2015 10:21:28 AM)
48
You are not alone!! B7 MN
I can see the comments show there are many of us with the same voice. You worded it beautifully. Kol hakavod and Hashem should bless you to enjoy your garden close up for many many years to come.
(8/6/2015 10:22:03 AM)
49
beautiful!
beautifully written! I agree with #20! You should definitely write a book! and yes # 47 I second that. this should be the "first" of many more!
(8/6/2015 10:47:09 AM)
50
amazing
Im not yet there, but i am feeling lonely eventhough all my kids are still home. and aalways have this SCARE of "what happens when they ALL leave the house" my little one is only 10yrs old i feel for you
(8/6/2015 10:50:58 AM)
51
Brought me almost to tears
Thank you for this beautiful article.
This is what COL should be posting, and then nobody would have any complaints.
Its honest, raw, uplifting and has a great message.
You are a lucky lady to have had the wisdom to have 14 kids.I have a small family and wish I had more.
Thank you for sharing this, truly beautiful. Thank you.
(8/6/2015 10:54:30 AM)
52
Empty nest...
Yup... Empty nest. Raised nine kids BH.All married BH.All left home and are all over the world on Shlichus.All BH have kids. We are home alone.... No grandkids coming over, no yom Tov family together as they all are needed in their place of Shlichus... I count my blessings...I am grateful to the Abishter...
Is this what the Rebbe meant? No kids near home....
(8/6/2015 10:58:02 AM)
53
beautiful
so so beautiful. I don't cry easily, and as a mum of young children with a hectic household BH this reigned true
Thank you toby! You have a heart that is in tune
(8/6/2015 11:33:33 AM)
54
Toby is not only an awesome MOM but an amazing
dedicated Shadchan too!!! I have never seen dedication to the cause like Toby has shown to my daughter while dating...and she stays on board coaching the young new datees to guide them thru to help them achieve clarity! Toby we are ever so grateful to you!!
(8/6/2015 11:51:58 AM)
55
Just wondering.................
Which stories did you tell your kids? Sarah pick up that dime or He is watching you
(8/6/2015 12:48:27 PM)
56
Remember the husband
Thanks for the beautiful article. I would like to add to it by emphasizing the importance of actively nurturing the relationship with the spouse through all the kiddie years and when it is just the two of you, you will have each other. Your husband is the only one in the world who really will be with you all your life (hopefully). Be grateful for that blessing and spend the time post kiddies enjoying life and the world together. From someone who is not married, just having a spouse is a whole world. 'One other' is a whole different universe from... none other.
(8/6/2015 1:17:43 PM)
57
Beautiful!
What an amazingly written article!
Mrs Lieder describes literally word for word, feeling for feeling, thought for thought exactly what so many of us are going through;
"The empty nest syndrome is something I always read.heard about, and never dreamt that would 'happen' to me!:(
Like, I thought having all the kids home was a forever thing, and this would just be my life, full stop;
and then with the added 'bonus' of having the kids leave home, and move all over the world, so that you see them , if you're lucky, twice a year, thats really the salt on the wounds . . .
So Toby, I really hear you, and thank you for sharing, its nice to know Im not alone in this;
May we have Moshiach now, so that all of us will have our kids and grandkids, next door, and 'empty nest syndrome' will no longer exist!
(8/6/2015 1:42:32 PM)
58
To #11
I might add a line on cleanliness from the Gemarra Tractate Sotah at the very end:"Cleanliness is next to G-dliness"--"U'nekiyus Mayveeoh....Lidei Ruach HaKodesh" ...
This was the caption on our 'Clean-up Flag' in Gan Yisroel in Montreal when we won 'Clean-up Day.
I too have a Mishpacha Bruchas Yelodim Boruch Hashem with 9 children already married. With each marriage there are more grand- children B"H and the'nest' keeps on getting emptier...I can fully relate to Mrs.Lieder's beautifully written article;Yasher Kochachen!
(8/6/2015 1:49:28 PM)
59
CHESED FOR HASHEM
Yes, the hours and days seem to shlep but the months and years really do fly by. There is no reason to be sad. B"H we are able to raise our children so that they become responsible adults facing the world and beginning the cycle of life anew. We need to be thankful to Hashem for being honored with caring for the holy neshamas he entrusted to us. Everything we do, from changing diapers, to feeding, clothing, nurturing, educating our children, is a chesed. Sweeping and mopping floors is a chesed. We are preparing our homes, our own Mikdash Mayat, for the Shechina to rest in our homes. We need to take time to dress nicely at home. If we look shloompy we'll feel shloopy but if we look attractive we'll feel attrractive, be in a positive mood, and everyone around us will be in a good mood.

Raising a family is one of the highest forms of chesed. We have the ability to elevate the most mundane to the spiritual. When we do laundry we ensure our family has clean clothing to wear; when we cook/bake we know our families will elevate the food from mundane to spiritual because they will make a bracha before eating and bracha achrona after the meal.

We need to be grateful that we lived to raise our families and eagerly await the next chapters in our lives which will, please G-d, be fulfilling and rewarding. We will have the time to indulge in nurturing ourselves - time to do things for pleasure - so we can keep ourselves fresh in order to serve Hashem.

It is a mitzvah to be joyful and to serve Hashem with love and joy.
(8/6/2015 2:09:15 PM)
60
To #52
With your current 'condition',i reccomend that you take more advantage of 'Skype' and 'Facetime'.It might be a small 'Nechama'...
(8/6/2015 2:13:49 PM)
61
The Quiet Doesn't Stay Quiet for Long
Shalom Mrs. Lieder, Boruch Hashem you have a lovely family. I became ba'alas teshuvah by being "adopted" into a yeshiva family in 2001. When I first started to meet the second generation (the grown children of my "adopters") most had young tots or were still having children. Only one had a married child. My friends are now great grandparents, with the very first great grandchild now a strapping 16 year old. When I first met Shimmy, it was before his upsherin ... and I didn't even know what that was. (I wondered why they had his girly-looking hair tied in a ponytail.) I just can't believe how that family has grown to a multi-generational dynasty of its own... with not a single one having left the path. I've shared in their joys, blessings and even their losses. It is very humbling to have merited being part of it. May you enjoy many more blessings, and bli ayin hora, may your family continue to grow in Hashem's path. And truly enjoy your "empty nest." Watching my friends, the quiet doesn't stay quiet long for the bubbehs and the zeidehs. Leah, in Toronto
(8/6/2015 2:30:17 PM)
62
Thank you!!
Beautiful article Toby!!! Such an important reminder----thank you!! btw I still try give my kids the 'minimum 40 kisses a day' that you once taught me in Shterny and Nechama Dina's meaningful motherhood! You're such a wise lady , love Tanya
(8/6/2015 2:34:50 PM)
63
N0 52
I echo your sentiments totally:(
We too have no children or grandchildren nearby, we have the syndrome in the full sense of the word
(8/6/2015 3:11:01 PM)
64
Really touched
I was woken up at 5am by my crying baby for the fourth time in the night, feeling so resentful that hes not sleep trained, and hes already 6 months, and why won't he just let me sleep a little. Feeling so frustrated as im nursing him, and then I read this! Oh, what ablessing to have such a special reason disturbing my sleep! Thank you hashem thank you!
(8/6/2015 3:16:23 PM)
65
To #59
Well written,thank you so much!
(8/6/2015 3:16:27 PM)
66
Loved it
Toby you and rabbi Leider are my heros
Only simchas
(8/6/2015 4:38:19 PM)
67
Don't be negative
Toby seems to have a bad case of Empty Nest Syndrome. And her perspective about it is not as positive as it could be. A mother in her situation has a choice, she can wallow in self pity abut not having her kids at home or she can see this as an opportunity for personal growth. There are so many wonderful things an older woman can do that will be productive and fulfilling for her, and she has many long healthy years IY"H ahead. Find some dreams and get busy with them instead of only bemoaning the lost years of mothering children.
(8/6/2015 5:38:33 PM)
68
And stay home with your kids!
Also had Kah same large family. Still have 4 home, but I'm really scared about the next couple years. Used to being so busy,crazy and hectic, won't know what to do with myself. Grandchildren all live out of town. I see an empty nest Facebook group...for chabadniks
(8/6/2015 6:27:57 PM)
69
Toda Raba Meod Meod
You absolutely special person and I'm very lucky to have you in my life
(8/6/2015 7:32:21 PM)
70
thank you!
Just exactly what I needed to hear!
(8/6/2015 7:50:58 PM)
71
bobby age
lovely article yes I totally agree my mother also told me these years when the kids are young and needy are the best!
(8/6/2015 8:36:51 PM)
72
THANK YOU SO MUCH!!!
I really appreciate this article. I'm a tatty who is in the beginning middle of the road and this really talks to me.
Thanks so much!!!
(8/6/2015 9:54:55 PM)
73
thanks
We learned from a friend to call it " open nesters". Hashem gave us kids so we can grow with them in the nest or out. Living to enjoy all the nachas they and the grandchildren bring is the.reason Hashem put us on this beautiful world. Enjoy each second the gift as yours.
(8/6/2015 10:11:43 PM)
74
to # 14!
Thx for posting Mrs. Toby Lieder's blogspot! It'e REALLY GOOD as well as this article!
(8/6/2015 10:52:37 PM)
75
Dear Toby what a great article !!!!!!
From you Yonger brother Mendel
You are the bestttt

Regards from Shruli Sharfstein!! He is still
Waiting on the corner
Roller drown is having a Bizzar. Iyyya iyyyya
(8/6/2015 11:44:17 PM)
76
For Some Love Life And Laughter
Click onto
Momof14.blogspot.com
You will see more of Tobys articles and collections!
(8/6/2015 11:53:23 PM)
77
Sad and depressing
I find this article very disturbing. My mother suffers this empty nest syndrome but wont do anything constructive about it. She and my father plot and fight with all their married kids just so she can still be the focal part in our lives . Obviously this has backfired and they just alienating them selves more . they don't actually want to be part of the nitty gritty of our lives and grandchildren's lives they just want the attention all for themselves .
I will never be like that so that is why as I approach my kids getting older and see within a few short years they are going to leave home , I have gone back to school ( flexible that doesn't impose on my family's needs now) and starting to think about life after the kids so I don't walk around looking for them in their beds after they leave.
My husband and I are best of friends and I look forward to spending more time with him, starting up a business and being their for the kids and grandkids if they need and want me but not to fulfill my boredom or loneliness!
(8/7/2015 1:13:08 AM)
78
Rabbi and Toby lieder
You guys are amazing. I spent a year in Sydney in some and shlichus 24 years ago and they are one couple I remember, they had a house full of kids and bet 4-8 no one was aloud to come to the house, they didn't speak on phones and that was the time they took care of their kids. I remember it so well. Toby you were always an inspiration.
We all thought you were the perfect mother (we were right)
Your life was your kids and nothing else can get in the way.
May Hashem bentch you to have only chassidishe nachas from all of them and they should build big beautiful families as you did.
(8/7/2015 2:23:48 AM)
79
Toby Replies
Thank you everyone for your warm feedback
I had no idea this article would touch so many
I was just sharing my soulfull thoughts with you about the new stage that one enters in life and is not quite prepared for!
I learned these days to be creative and get involved in numerous fulfilling projects like starting my own blog and sharing the best of everything I have collected over 40 years! There's still tons more to share It'll take a lifetime to finish! I am busy that wasn't my point when I said it is lonely. No matter how busy we are we still "crave" those good Ol days , you know what I mean!? I know we can't get them back and it's in the past and I'm ok with 'getting that' it's just a "feeling of missing the whole hoolabla of family life that we had for so many years
The music in the kitchen while preparing for shabbos , dishing orders to everyone to do their jobs ,the dinners the shabbosim the full house (each kid brought only just one friend!) the noise the laughter the dmc Friday night after the meal etc. I am just expressing that I miss those days I'm not negative or complaining I'm merely expressing a feeling. Are we allowed to express feelings without being judged for being negative? It's actually just sharing. its healthy to share especially if even just one person learns from it and gets to appreciate the value of TIME. I want the young ones to know that everything is so temporary and "chap arayn" and have as many kids as Hashem blesses us with and not think about convenience because you know something? Hashem will keep you busy with other things and the money will go for other things nobody gets away with it being easy so you may as well bring Neshomos into the world for the same price!
I remember someone once saying Hashem spreads out the parnassa to 2 or 20 kids ! One can be running to doctors with 2 kids or 20 kids it's all cheshboned out We cannot be smarter then Hashem! I worked as hard as someone that had 4 kids. So we may as well have 14 if it's all the same! It's a gift it's like Hashem is offering you diamonds and you say No Thank you?
I guarantee that it is is so worth the effort at the end of the day! Don't be misled by society and think your getting away with an easier more financially secure life by limiting your diamonds. Hashem will definitely bless you with the koiach the energy to handle them! Ain Hakodesh Boruch Hu Bo Btrunia I'm Breeosov 😀 Hashem doesn't give us more then we can handle! Open your arms and accept the gift of children and Hashem will provide! Enjoy those diamonds! They are generations of people that are going to bring thousands more Neshomos into this world. I always said what would happen if my Bubby winter's mother decided not to give birth to her? Where would over a thousand of us be today? We wouldn't be. Every diamond is generations of Neshomos lets open our arms and minds and accept the gifts that Hashem showers upon us! Till all the Neshomos will bring Moshiach NOW
(8/7/2015 2:41:15 AM)
80
Busy Mama
Wow! Speechless! Tears running down my face. Thanks!!
(8/7/2015 2:52:14 AM)
81
Proud of you mommy!
Guess which child this is? Hehe! I am proud to say mommy you are and were the best mommy ever. You taught us how to love and laugh and that happiness is more important than anything. As I read the part of having a child on every corner of the bed I remember that. How you and ta accepted us each into your room each of us for our own reasons but you kept us close and told us stories. Anyone who says a large family makes you miss out on a lot In life, I as an adult can say I learnt from a young age how to share, how to love, and be loved by two of the most amazing parents ever, they also parented endless guests as well as us and taught us hachnasas orchchim and endless kindness! Mommy be proud because you gave us every part of you and we will carry it on I"h to our children, love E
(8/7/2015 11:54:50 AM)
82
C.B.
Don't they come and visit sometimes?
(8/7/2015 11:56:55 AM)
83
To #79-Mrs.Toby Lieder Tichyeh
Thank you so much for your wonderful words in your 'Post-Script'.
A gutten Shabbos to you and to all the esteemed readers of this most heartwarming article.
A special 'thank you' to C.O.L. for hosting this forum.
(8/7/2015 1:33:25 PM)
84
from Tanta Toby G,
Dear Toby,
Haven't heard or spoken to you in years. My kids showed me your article and I shepped nachas! Just remember that Hashem runs the world. Nothing happens by itself. Just sit back an enjoy!!
luv!! Luv!!
(8/7/2015 4:14:45 PM)
85
YES
COUNT YOUR BLESSINGS AND CONCENTRATE ON THEM!!!!!!
(8/8/2015 6:04:25 PM)
86
Needed this!
Thank you so much for such a wonderful article! As someone who just entered this stage of life and trying to navigate it I was glad to read this and see that I 'm not the only one.

I also appreciated the post scripts and the input of others who have gone through this. Any more thoughts that can added to this would be most welcome!
(8/8/2015 9:57:30 PM)
87
my grandson calls me Gampa
Your story is on the money, now my wife and I look forward to our weekly visits with our grandson charlie........
(8/8/2015 10:11:41 PM)
88
Great!
A beautiful person! A great mother! Am amazing article!!
(8/8/2015 11:16:45 PM)
89
Toby!
Remember me? Havent seen u in 40? yrs........
very pertinent article! Thank you!
Freida Shpigelman (Gerlitzky)
(8/9/2015 11:11:59 PM)
90
Another Mother's reply
I liked your reply to the list of previous writers. There is one thing that I hear that young mothers miss and I only learned once mine were older. That is that you cannot imagine the effect of what you do for your children. Every time you bake challah with them, it creates a dynamic in their being. Do not wait til they are older and finally express what they were feeling all the years, but never came out. Many times as the children were teens and adults, they said, OH Mommy, what you did then was so meaningful to me, or the time we went here or there was so fantastic, I want to do that with my children. Know as young parents that everything you do makes an imprint on your children, even things that you feel are immaterial. Enjoy each stage, and do your best. That is all that you can do and they love you for it.
(8/10/2015 8:59:50 AM)
91
reader
i thank you for sharing your deep thoughts, and being so open about them. and, you covered both ends of the issue....the mailos and chesronos, so to speak. One benefit to this, is that our kids need to understand OUR situation. We have an empty house, after wanting them and loving them. That is hard, and the kids need to remember that they should call from time to time and remember that we are always important to them. In the interum of calls and being included (to a certain healthy amount) we can enjoy our freedom to take a shower and enjoy the scented soap, to go to a shiur or a friends house or a simcha, and do it in our own time, etc. But it is important that you shared how this age thinks and what they go through. We all need to understand each other's challenges and feelings and experiences....at least enough that we can try to help each other, as true yidden do. theres more thoughts to this article, but that is part of it ! I think though that the rocking chair comment at the end, although said with humor, is a bit depressing, and although some people in this category/time of life do feel that way, we have to keep active and be positive about it. thankyou for sharing a slice of life and helping us get insights into this.
(8/10/2015 11:56:50 AM)
92
CyberSem
To all of you vibrant Bubbies, continue learning in the time you seem to have. You will feel young and see that you still can do it. Look us up on www.cybersem.com, and email me through the site if you have any questions.
Chavi Goldberg, a fellow bubby who also went back to school as a bubby and feels that our experience is right on the mark for what today's children need.
(8/10/2015 9:37:34 PM)
93
Amazing
thank you for sharing such a beautiful article
(8/11/2015 12:25:18 AM)
94
To Fraidy from Pardes chana
We don't mind if we're eaten by cows!
Our name is eisev!!🎼
(8/11/2015 3:29:38 AM)
95
A lovely article
You have touched thousands with this article. After reading it I certainly became more appreciative of my lively brood! Thank you for the warmth and sincerity in your writing. Please keep these articles coming! We can all gain so much.
(8/11/2015 12:01:06 PM)
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