I have just finished sorting my mother’s things in preparation for her move from the hospital, where she has been since a nasty spill in mid-July, to a single room in the complex care wing of her small city’s old age home. (Er, I guess that would be “seniors’ village”; that’s what this one calls itself.)
Not counting her clothes, her belongings fill six small boxes.
This has been an emotional summer in so many ways, and I am trying to muster up some cheerfulness because that is what Mom most needs to see from me; my inner self is howling like a baby.
I’m glad she didn’t die; the facility she is going to will provide stellar care – we have another family member and several friends living there, and are personal friends with several staffers – one of the nicer things about having grown up near a smaller community (the city proper has a population of 10,000 people, though the service area is closer to 30,000); Mom herself states that she is more ready to make the move; there is no way she will ever be able to manage living in her own home, what with her physical limitations and increasing frailty.
Eighty-eight years of life; so many accomplishments; so much work done. All passed; all put behind her. All that is left is her memories, and six small boxes.
There, doesn’t that sound melancholy?! Onward and upward, that’s the theme I need to embrace. It’ll be a far cry better than the hospital, is what Mom reminded me today, and she said something about there being a certain freedom in stripping oneself of all those things; it’s down to essentials from here on in. Oh, and to remember to go through my shelves one more time, and to pack her up a box or two of books, and to keep my eyes open for new reading for her.
Comfort in books is something my mom knows a lot about, and she’s more than passed that down to me. And with that thought, I’ll sign off for tonight. It will all be okay. But just for tonight, I’m sad.