I’m in the throes of arranging to move my 90-year-old aunt into an assisted living home, and the process is daunting in every way. We’ve been trying to get her to at least move into a smaller place closer to us (she’s AN HOUR AWAY) for the past 30 years – she’s living on her own in a 3-level home with steep stairs AND she has mobility problems – with no luck until now. Finally, after a second-floor pipe ruptured in her 1915 house resulting in costly repairs, she became convinced that the high cost of maintaining an old house isn’t worth the headaches – or the cost at this point in her life. She’s got very little to live on as it is.
That was the turning point that convinced her to move, and it was a blessing in disguise, because she’s become unstable walking and I really wanted her near me as well as in a nice place where there would be people around who could help her. Plus her neighborhood has changed a lot, and she no longer knows anyone there, so she’s become isolated. All together, these and other issues are recipes for disaster and unhappiness.
FINALLY, she agreed to let us bring her down to look at some nice assisted living homes. Her eyes opened WIDE and she fell in love with the places, the people, the friendly aides, the food – it was wonderful! She’ll be catered to for the rest of her life, she’ll have friends aplenty, and she’ll have a sense of purpose. I’m so happy!
The one catch is —– we need to move her by the end of the month. There’s only one apartment open, which is perfect for her, and they’ll only hold it until the end of September, and that’s doing us a favor – normally they only hold them for 1-2 weeks. SOOOO, I’m arranging everything to make this happen in triple-time: selling her house (which won’t be easy, it’s incredibly rundown), moving her bank accounts, getting her medical assessments done, filling out a TON of forms (seriously, together they look like a book!), moving the things she’ll be taking with her, packing 81 years of stuff and selling what she’s not taking, getting financial Power of Attorney because she no longer wants to handle her own finances, so I’ll be doing that for her…that’s just the beginning. The list is endless and the timing has to be just right. But it’ll be SO worth it in the long run!
All this has created a mess in our house AGAIN – this seems to be a theme for us this year – The Year Of Messes. I’ve been moving boxes of things from her house to mine until we can move them into her new place or sell them at auction in October and November. The boxes have taken over my computer room and part of my living room (I swear they multiply at night!), so I’ve been working in the dining room.
This chaos has been a dream for Daisy, though. She’s got all this new stuff to sniff and investigate, plus she now gets to sit at the dining room table with me while I’m working (yeah, I know, I’m weak; her sweetness and cuteness win me over every time). There’s a double window near the table, and some days have been so cool and beautiful out that I was able to open windows in the house (finally, after that brutal summer! Though two days ago it was 100 degrees and humid again….) and I noticed Daisy trying to sniff the air. So I covered the chair seats with blankets and rearranged things a bit for her. This is now her new favorite spot – on sunny days, the sunlight streams in, so she gets to sit on a chair, sniff the air coming in the window, AND bask in a puddle of sunshine all at the same time – a Havachon dream come true!
If we’ve been a bit scarce lately, all this extra work is the reason why. I can’t wait until it’s all done and settled and I can have a normal weekend again!