...Continued from yesterday:
Now that I'd signed the initial paperwork to start the admittance process of my mother becoming a Sunrise of Gahanna resident, there was lots more paperwork to be done and - since my ninety-nine-and-a-half- year-old mother would be moving from Seaford, Delaware, to Gahanna, Ohio, - several weeks worth of long-distance transactions, transferences, evaluations, determinations, and decisions to be made. And phone calls. And faxes. And emails. And texts.
And while my brother and sister-in-law (who were my mother's current guardians), myself, and the chill, cheery folks at Sunrise excavated our way through the mini-mountain of administrative preliminaries, my brother and sister-in-law took on the task of prepping my mom for the move and I dove into prepping her new room.
The assisted living section of Sunrise - there was a memory care unit as well - was divided into two "houses," the entrance to each of which resembled the entrance to a house.
My mom's room, which opened into the common living area of her house,
....was spacious, bright, sunny, and empty except for a bed, bedside table, and headboard.
Thus it became my task - nay, my mission - to fill that empty room with stuff that would turn it into a space that my mother would love. Or so I hoped.
For weeks I hoped and I shopped and I stressed over every purchase:
These towels or those towels? These sheets or those sheets? This trash can or that trash can? This chair or that chair? This mirror or that mirror? This TV or that TV? What kind of dresser, what kind of recliner, what kind of desk? I galloped from store to store, to store, to store, looking at things, buying things, changing my mind, returning things, buying different things. I felt paralyzed with anxiety over making even the smallest purchase without the approval of at least one of my siblings, none of whom actually cared whether I bought the metallic-framed bulletin board or the wood grain-framed one.
My brother and sister-in-law, meanwhile, had their hands full on their end. While my mother expressed no categorical opposition to moving from her home - whatever she was feeling in her heart, she seemed resigned to the inevitable - she was nonetheless insistent that her pictures must come with her. All her pictures.
Or at least all the pictures in her dining room.
And so my sister-in-law, the kindest and most dutiful of daughters-in-law, carefully and meticulously wrapped, packed, and sent out every picture on my mother's dining room wall, and soon my living room was filled with boxes of pictures,
...it being left to my discretion which among the dozens of pictures would find a home in our mom's new quarters.
And so I outfitted my mom's room, decision by angst-filled decision, bit by bit,
...picture by picture,
...day by day, week by week,
...expenditure by expenditure,
...including treats for Ginger, the Sunrise dog and Dennis, the Sunrise cat.
Then, finally, the room was as ready.
On Tuesday, November 12, My mom left her home in Seaford, Delaware for the last time and arrived at her new home in Ohio at Sunrise of Gahanna, where she immediately set about the task of making new friends,
...endearing herself to the staff and her new neighbors, and endeavoring to navigate a new life in a new place at ninety-nine-and-a-half years old.
As for how she liked her room: When I told her I decorated it and that I hoped she liked it she replied that it was the most beautiful room she'd ever seen.
My mom has been at Sunrise of Gahanna for 19 days now. To me it feels more like 19 months. Or longer, even.
I mean that not at all in a negative sense; quite the contrary, in fact. It's just that since I've become my mother's guardian, advocate, daily visitor, emotional care-giver, and provider of her needs - including anything I can conceive of or imagine that she might possibly need or want or might please her - this new life I've crossed over into has been so all-consuming that it feels as if I left the life I was leading before far behind, long ago (see post from 11/16/2019, "Another New Life").
In any case, for the past 19 days I've had less time and even less space in my head for writing. (Alas, for me writing requires not only time but sufficient head space).
And so it's likely that from now on my blog posts may be fewer and farther between for a while. And in case it should turn out that Ailantha must go dormant for a short or long time, then let me take a moment now to thank you, my dear readers, from my heart. I appreciate you all more than I can say.
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0BTPN7NYY
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon:
"Equal And Opposite Reactions"
by Patti Liszkay
Buy it on Amazon:
The Book Loft
of German Village,
Or check it out at the Columbus Metropolitan Library
I am a traveler just visiting this planet and reporting various and sundry observations,
hopefully of interest to my fellow travelers.