Tuesday, July 21, 2009

mother's big move

Saturday we move Mom to an assisted living here in Grove City. She is apprehensive, I am sure, as evidenced by the many daily calls to my sister about the dimensions of her new room and what furniture she will bring. I cannot imagine the emotions of being pulled away from the town you have lived in since 1962. From the home you raised your family in. From neighbors, friends, church. Let's be honest, Mom hasn't been to church in a while, and she has only a small handful of friends, most of whom rarely visit. Her neighbors have changed over the years and the few she does know well have got to be relieved that she is not returning to her home, where she relied on them a little too heavily.

Despite this huge upheaval in her life, I am warily confident that this move will be good for Mom. Even though she is currently living in an assisted living in my home town, 5 minutes away from her house and even closer to her oldest daughter. Even though she will be leaving her friends. It's hard, this parenting your parents. I think I know what is best for her. But just like my own child, I am not 100% sure.

Here is what I do know. Being closer to me means more time with my growing family. It means the ability to go to church with us, to participate in Matthew's day care programs. It means I can stop by on my way home from work and spend a few minutes. It means my son will have the opportunity to know his grandmother as well as he knows Brad's side of the family. They are already interacting more these past 2 weeks than they have this whole past year. It means my mother can be a part of my life in a way she never has been.

And here I thought this decision would only better serve my mother. I thought this move would become simply another task for me. Taking over the management of my mother's care is going to be time consuming. It's going to be frustrating and sad, at times. I certainly did not think I would be getting anything out of this deal except for, hopefully, a calmer sister and less guilt over not being 100% sure we were doing the right thing by Mom. But that is not all I will be getting. I will be getting my mother. My son will be getting his grandmother, up close and personal. Now I think that maybe we are all getting a sweet deal.

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