A Life Condensed in 20 Minutes

Like it or not we are sometimes measured by our possessions. Bigger house, bigger car, closets full of trendy clothes all contribute to our feelings of worth. We have more we feel like we are “more.”

We moved Mom into assisted living a couple of months ago. I took some time off and I needed it. But I’m back and have some reflections on this move.

The title sums up some feelings I had. It shows that when you are moving into another stage of life, things get condensed. We moved Mom in two vehicles and maybe 20 minutes. 84 years of life shrunk to a few boxes, some clothes, a chair, some pictures, and we were done.

Her spirits were good as this was the first time she saw her new home. Joe came and helped move in her few needed belongings to aide in personalizing an institutional environment. Each door has a shadow box nearby to reflect the personality of the resident. We chose a recent picture or our trip up north and mini version of her world record certificate along with two world champion medals for Mom’s diorama.

She was introduced to a care giver that would be with her for most of the day. In this facility they have someone stay with the resident for the first 24 hours. This helps the resident have fewer fears in what can only be an unsettling transition.

We returned to a quite house without a quite sometimes brooding, seldom talkative Mom. The whole event from door to door couldn’t have taken an hour and a half.

Now we settle in for the next chapter.