“Aunt Frances” is moving to an assisted living facility in a neighboring town close to her church. Not really her choice but when 2 of her “children” (her children are 79, 76, and 74) are moving to retirement communities in Florida and leaving shortly, and her one son needing surgery and a long term rehabilitation, she had two choices…she could either come along and live with one of them or move to an assisted living facility. She chose the assisted living facility…and had two weeks to get used to the idea and to drastically downsize.
I had been going there weekly and have gradually seen her having her good days and her not so good days. She relied on her one son weekly to take her on her errands and her pastor/pastor’s husband picking her up for various church activities…suddenly the son has to have his surgery and the pastor retired and is moving to Florida as well.
Her one big concern was her cat “Lady”. When I went there two weeks ago, she asked and generally assumed I would take her cat “Lady”. With Kitty the way he is now…very aggressive, I knew it would not be a good idea to bring her home with me…so I had to say no. In the size of her family, there wasn’t one person who would take Lady. My neighbor finally found a home for Lady and took her there yesterday…the family had said the other alternative was taking Lady back to the pound(trust me, I had sleepless nights on this one).
My neighbor has been very upset about her aunt moving to the assisted living…but I have been telling her the positives…that Aunt Frances won’t have to cook her own meals, she will have a decent shower (her water hadn’t been working properly), she won’t have to worry about if anything goes wrong and she has to call someone to come and fix it and that she will have people to talk to(she was alone most of the time).
In her 101 years she has had many transitions in her life…from being in a childrens’ home during the Depression because her mother had died and her father couldn’t take care of the children, WW2, her husband dying young and she having to take care of their 3 children on her own, managing both a job and the farm, moving from the farm to the trailer, and now moving again.
I learned through Aunt Frances these past two weeks is that “Stuff” isn’t important. She is taking as many pictures as she is able to. The basics in her furniture because she will only have one room. Her bedroom suite she has had for 80 years is being left behind. She wants her sewing machine and her knitting/crochet needles along. The only knick knacks coming along are the items her husband had bought for her.
She moves Tuesday. She’s been my “Tuesday person” for quite a while now and I am going to be at loose ends as well…
Stay well “Aunt Frances” and hoping you will find joy in your new living quarters…I will miss my Tuesdays with you.
til next time…Eva