I know I haven’t been writing to you much lately. I’ve been occupied with helping move and settle my parents into an elder apartment. (I just spent five days unpacking, culling, running errands, and sleeping in a recliner.) My husband was beginning to wonder if he still had a wife! (Some lovely flowers greeted me when I returned home. He’d also completed some home improvements that thrilled me—but that is another blog!)
A lot of baby boomers like my siblings and I are dealing with the end-of-life issues of elderly parents. We meet at church, work, library, and even the grocery store and share stories of many of the same concerns. We suffer under the same pressures. We are angry, worried, frustrated, and relieved by turns. I was fortunate to team up with my elder sister to clean out and pack most of the house. We think alike when it comes to pitching, organizing, and packing. We work well together, and in a strange sort of way, we had a nice visit while sorting through closets. It was like a slumber party with stress!
We experienced Indian Summer and peak color while packing and moving the house. Doing a dreary job was cushioned by bright, warm, colorful days. There was sadness in knowing that we would not be coming back to the land again, so I took some pictures and picked some flowers.
I also stored some memories. My dad was in the hospital and rehab during this time. Many of my siblings came and stayed at the house while visiting him. At the same time, I and my sisters were there caring for mother. I had not seen one of my older brothers in over a decade because he lives so far away. We had a chance to go for a walk and visit. There is one road that winds uphill through fields and woods and past the farms of our Amish neighbors. At one point we paused when we heard the sounds of at least three Great Horned owls as they flew through the timber calling to each other at dusk. My brother and I rested and listened for quite a while. I’ll always remember that time with my big brother. It brought to mind other memories of riding my horse home at dusk down the old, narrow, tree canopied logging roads and the almost silent swoosh of an owl gliding low over my head in the gloom.
My mother cried—not with sadness when she left the house and land, but with happiness when she moved into the partially unpacked, sun-filled apartment. It’s been a tough couple of weeks for everyone, and it isn’t over yet. I am relieved though that my parents are now in a safe friendly place. Begonia