January and March/April, 2016: While Chris was off working in Azerbaijan earlier this year, I made two trips to Canada. The first in January was a short two week jaunt to help my dad figure out if he was ready to move from the family home of 49 years into a retirement community. Once that decision was made, things snowballed really quickly.
Not long after I returned to MOKEN, dad was offered a place at Elim Retirement Village, he got the house ready to put on the market, it was listed and he received and accepted an offer in less than a week. Now all that was left was going through a lifetime of collectibles and stuff, deciding what to move and sorting through the rest. Easy peasy. To help with the move, I flew home again in the spring. This time for a month.
Needless to say, it was a busy time with very little room for play. But I did squeeze in a one-day intensive marine electrical course for women boaters, a couple of short visits with friends and a day trip to Sidney to meet up with Chris’ parents for lunch and add more stuff into our storage. Trips home aren’t complete unless they involve shopping for boat parts, so there was plenty of that. (Of course it couldn’t all fit in my luggage, so I packed a lot of things into a balikbayan box and sent that off to Subic. Hopefully it arrives some day.)
Suddenly, moving day was upon us. And with extra help from the moving company and one of dad’s friends, we had his new apartment unpacked, set up and mostly ready by late afternoon. At times it didn’t seem possible, but we did it.
A couple of days later, as I winged back to the Philippines, all that remained was an online auction of dad’s remaining treasures and the final cleanup of the house before the closing date on the house. That happens later this week.
Going through all dad’s stuff and helping him decide what to keep and what to get rid of was a difficult process for both of us. It’s a radical transition and that came with stress, anguish and the odd tear, but it was worth it in the end. Dad is busy meeting all his new neighbours and joining the range of activities offered in his new community. Enjoy your new home, Dad!
It’s always bittersweet to stroll down memory lane, isn’t it? I’m glad he’s been set up in what sounds like such a positive environment. We’re still hoping Kerry’s grandma will want to make that transition soon, because as it is now, she’s alone in her little house, mostly blind, with very little social interaction save her daughter and the nurses who come in three times a day to heat up her meals. It’s very sad.
Anyway, hi to Chris for us!
Thanks Larissa. After dad made the move, he said “I should have done this 3 years ago.” It was his stuff that held him back. Now he doesn’t miss any of it. Social interaction is so key for elderly people. I was reading about loneliness in seniors and its shockingly sad. Good luck.