Chat @ Care-giving: When Seeing Is Not Believing

So the furniture in Mom’s living room was pushed aside and the room was filled with boxes. I’d packed her best decorative items, all her clothes and accessories and all of her back stock of toiletries.  I still had weeks to go before the actual move, but I was tired of repeatedly hearing Mom’s concerns about storage and my husband was tired of hearing me reiterate what I’d heard.

Just before closing time one evening, Bill and I made a visit to IKEA and Bed, Bath & Beyond to pick up the storage items Mom and I had agreed would work in her new apartment.  The box holding the kitchen hutch was so long we had to rearrange the garage to pull the loaded car into it.  Early the next morning we borrowed a pick up truck from the local Home Depot and unloaded the boxes from Mom’s living room.  There was so much, that we had to pack quite a bit around the boxes I carried in my car.

Taking it up to the third floor of Whiterock Court didn’t take us long, but then I had to hang eight wardrobe boxes of clothes and Bill had a lot of cabinets to build.  The carpentry took some doing, so much so, that Bill had to come back a second time to complete the job.

I thought it was well worth the effort.  The clothes fit into the available closet space with two closets to spare and the cabinetry looked great.  I brought Mom over to show her my closet miracle and to load up the shelves with her direction.  As I whipped open the closets with pride, especially the two empty ones, Mom did not faint with joy.   She did not care how many linear feet of closet space there was in the new apartment.  Instead, she lamented the convenience of having five closets to sort her clothes into.  I longed for a small crumb of appreciation for all my hard work, but it was not forthcoming – and I was getting used to it.

Organizing the toiletries didn’t take long and it was obvious that there would be plenty of room for the items they were using at home.  This feat did not impress Mother either.  She sweetly informed me that I must have left some stuff at the house, because what we stored could not have been all she had.  I ground my teeth and took her home.

The balance of the packing was actually fairly easy.  With three meals a day provided by Whiterock Court, along with weekly linen and housekeeping services, some of the more difficult packing jobs were  unnecessary.  I could have moved them in a week earlier than scheduled, but Mom wasn’t going to budge until the appointed time.

I was tempted to start tackling some of the tasks associated with the estate sale I had planned after their move, but I resisted the temptation.  Mom had a lot of stuff to cram into her new apartment and all we needed was for me to start going through the shed in the backyard, the cabinets in the den or the cedar chest in her bedroom, so she could spy more things she couldn’t live without.  That was part of phase two and it needed to wait.

It would have been great if I could have stayed home some of those days and caught up with all the things I was behind on, but since my primary goals were to keep Mom happy and keep her from changing her mind about moving, I danced attendance on her.  We delivered pot plants to ailing friends, shopped for a possible replacement for my dad’s recliner, got clothes altered she wouldn’t wear until spring and a variety of other non-essentials.  My husband was going crazy, but I was on task.

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