Settling In

Life has offered us another opportunity…a metamorphosis or iteration of what normal is for us. Wow. That’s sounds pretty philosophical, doesn’t it? At any rate, the change in our lives is that my mother has come to live with us.

The reason for that isn’t great…it’s her health. But she stabilized and settled in and just this past week, we brought out her own bedroom furniture and made it a permanent thing. It’s definitely a change, for us and for her. And yes, there’s downsides. But the positives far outweigh the extra work involved.

I am getting to know my mother, whom I’ve held in such high regard for so many years, better than I’ve ever had an opportunity to before. I’m finding out she’s not perfect. She gets cranky, especially when she’s tired or patronized. But she’s also gracious and generous with her thanks and compliments.

She has a sweet tooth and is a definite desert person. Friends and family keep bringing her chocolates, which she proudly tries to share with us. I hate to say no, because I get the sense it’s something she’s able to offer us in this day and age when we are the ones getting her everything she needs.

She’s very particular about what goes where, and a bit of a clean freak. Must be from all those years of having us five messy kids around, huh?

She’s always been kind when speaking of others, but I never realized it was a mindset, not something she remembers to do. Mom genuinely sees the good in people.

And she’s as grateful for us as we are for her. We are truly blessed. I also love that I have 4 siblings. This isn’t just something my husband and I took on. My brothers have been moving furniture out here as needed and bringing dinner out to save me a night of cooking and to visit. My sister comes to stay so we can get regular breaks from the duties of having someone to care for. And my other sister, who lives on the other side of the states, is in constant touch, providing moral support to Mom and to us.

So it works. It really does. I don’t know if we have a month, a year, or more with Mom. And I know there will be tough times, both with the day-to-day stuff and when her health declines again. But for now, life is good. 🙂

Now if we can just get these darn cats to get along. Getting two solitary older cats (Mom’s and ours) to cohabitate isn’t exactly easy. I walk around the house with a spray bottle in my hand, ready for the next spitting and hissing fight.

So I hope your 2016 is going as well as ours so far, or even better. Because life is very worth embracing for every moment we can squeeze out of it.

With Mom last year on Mt. Rainier.

With Mom last year on Mt. Rainier.

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11 responses to “Settling In

  1. We’ve talked often about how blessed we are with family. These days will bring priceless memories. I can see the laughing and loving. So often we get too busy or stressed and we miss what’s important you’re lucky you’re not doing this.

    • You’ve helped me numerous times over this settling in process and I appreciate you so much for that. 🙂 And yep…focusing on what’s important is the plan right now.

  2. Oh, Laurie. Your post has certainly touched a nerve with me. Dave and I have been trying to persuade my mum to move in with us. She’s frail and unable to walk far any more but she still wants her independence and her own home, which I can understand. When we first married we had Dave’s mum living with us and it wasn’t easy, she was terminally ill and needed a lot of care and I hardly knew her but those 18 months we had were ones I am glad we shared. There will be difficult times but I am sure with the loving support your mother has she will be happy, and you will all enjoy the precious time together. God bless you. 🙂

    • It’s not easy talking parents into co-habitating. Ours had to get sick before she made the choice. I hope it doesn’t reach that point with your mother. And you are so right about how precious this time is. Thanks, Kit!

  3. So glad to hear she’s settling in and that you’re learning new things about her. That’s super. AND that you have the help of your siblings it very, very nice. What a lovely family she raised. Now, those pesky kitties……
    Jillian

  4. Valerie J. Patterson

    Laurie, it is a loving thing you and your hubby are doing for your mom. It’s a huge transition for her as well as you. The good thing is that she is with family–her own daughter–and still has some of her independence. Please remember to take time for yourself and keep your siblings involved so that you continue to have down time. Your mom has clearly raised a good and loving daughter!

    • Yep. It’s a good thing. And yep on that time for myself. I’m actually a week away from a Caribbean cruise we booked before Mom got sick. My sister is coming to stay with Mom and the cats so we can still go. I love my family. 🙂

      • Valerie J. Patterson

        It’s good to know there are others to step up when you need help! Enjoy your cruise, too!

  5. How lovely that you have this time with your mum, Laurie. I know it must involve lots of adjustments for you both, but your positive and loving attitude really comes through in this post. You are very lucky to have such a caring and supportive family. Enjoy your Caribbean cruise 🙂

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