So long summer – I, for one, will not miss you!

Hi all,
It has been a while since I have written, but that is good because I have accomplished a lot and finally got some things completed. And now it is Labor Day – where did the summer go, right? Not for me – I am very happy this summer is on its way out.
This summer represents one of the worst periods in my life – starting on June 10 with Nick’s hospitalization and ending with me finally closing down my mother’s apartment on Saturday.
So, as I reflect on what went on – it sort of sounds like this :
  • Putting Nick in the hospital
  • 5 days later putting my mom in the hospital
  • Researching rehab care for Nick
  • Researching nursing homes for Mom
  • Selling my mother’s car
  • Moving Nick into rehab
  • Moving my mom into the nursing home
  • Overseeing the construction of our deck
  • Managing the day-to-day of two households
  • Staying up all night worrying because Nick was not home
  • Going to Wyoming to pick up Nick
  • Arranging to have Nick’s car transported back to Erie
  • Dealing with the insurance company on Nick’s car
  • Dealing with the insurance company regarding mom’s long term care insurance
  • Overseeing the landscaping project for both the front and back yards
  • Planning the close down of my mother’s apartment
  • Renting a car for my aunt and her travelling companion who spent two weeks visiting mom (I thank God for the care and support they gave her and the relief they gave to me)
  • Physically closing down my mother’s apartment – dealing with the consignment people who moved the furniture, the Salvation Army who picked up most of the rest, and loving friends who helped me pack
  • Managing my mother’s health care – the ups and downs on confusion, skin tears and falls
  • Fighting with the nursing home over keeping my mom in a private room
  • Taking my car into the dealership and finding out it needs a whole new engine
  • Oh, and working a full time job which was only full time for two of the weeks between June 10 and now (my staff is now completely burned out and overwhelmed)

And that’s about it. I look back and say, wow, certainly a lot was accomplished – but it was stressful, and painful. I am not sad to see this chapter closed.

And yet, this chapter has fundamentally changed me and my perspective on things. I am happy – and I can’t believe that I can say that. When this first started and right before everything hit the fan, I was wondering if I would ever be happy again. That was very hard, and despressing to the point of contemplating why I should even continue to value my life.

But, finally something did happen, and even though it was horrific, it ended a lot of waiting and anticipating, wondering and worrying. It all burst open, and although it was painful, it was also something tangible to deal with. And that provided me perspective and grounded me. It also taught me to appreciate the little things, and I take a lot of joy from that now.

As we move forward, things are looking very positive for Nick. Day by day he is getting stronger and it is so nice to see come back the man I married. It is much more peaceful and stable at home.

As for my mom, only time will tell with her. She is going to die, but so will we all someday. But she is pain free, and she has the best quality of life possible under the circumstances. I got word from her insurance company that her benefits have been approved, so with that, I will be able to manage her finances and maybe even save some money for her versus just seeing it all pour out to the nursing home. She is ecstatic about that, and that makes me happy.

The apartment is all done. I will turn the keys in on Thursday (the last day it is ours) and I want to walk through it one more time and think about all of the joy it brought both mom and me. She had the opportunity to be more social, live in a great place, make some great new friends and be near family for the past couple of years, and that was much better than the life she was leading after my dad died – so I will smile about that and cry for the loss – and walk out of that apartment and into the whatever will be – for me, my mom and Nick. But I can say right now, that phase looks a lot better than the phase I entered into on June 10. Thank God!

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