The time this week not spent with Nick and his surgery has been spent closing down mom’s apartment. I’ve added a photo album of pictures that I took before beginning the packing process.
Mom really loved this place. She lived in an apartment building that was privately owned. The owners had both of their mothers living there. It was a really nice place, not at all what some of the more typical senior housing buildings looked like. As a matter of fact, if you did not know the building only rented to people 55 and over, you could never tell by looking at either from the outside or the inside. Thank God someone figured out that seniors should be treated like human beings and not old people.
She had a very good deal – a two bedroom apartment (that had its own laundry room as well as covered garage parking – the two selling points for my mom), on the top floor with a balcony. Everything was included in the rent, heat, air conditioning, electricity, water, and even cable. The only thing extra my mother had to pay for was her phone bill. Her rent was $1400/month and when she rented she signed a 3 year lease so the rent stayed the same the whole time.
The owners always did great things for the residents – twice a week coffees with sweets in the large community kitchen area, movies once a week in the mini-theatre (which has a large screen TV), field trips once a month, luncheons at different restuarants once a month, guest speakers coming in, hand massages, and even a once a month pot luck dinner where the owners provided the main course and the residents bring the side dishes.
This place was the perfect place for my mother. She loved being around people and she made a lot of friends very quickly. The last year or so that she lived in Florida she was becoming very isolated and really only went out of the house to go to church, play bingo once a week and meet my aunt for breakfast once a week. Nick and I tried for 2 years to get her to move to Colorado. When she finally consented, she never looked back and she really enjoyed herself. My mom has been to places here in Colorado that I have not been to. She felt safe there, she made lots of friends there, and as I began closing down the apartment I could not help but feel that it all was a little unfair. But, life isn’t fair and I am grateful that she found a place that she loved so much and that for the last 2 1/2 years she was near me.
Today the Longmont flea market came to look at potentially buying some of her furniture. It almost felt like dividing up the spoils, but I have to get rid of her stuff and we have to be out of there by the end of August. My mom’s attitude is pretty good about this – she knows she can’t handle her health care by herself, and she knows that she needs help just to get by on a day to day basis. This is perhaps the saddest thing I have had to do to date – because she is still alive and you almost feel like you are closing the coffin lid prematurely. But my mom is not rich and she cannot afford to pay rent on an apartment that is empty. This has to get done. It’s just plain sad.