Sometimes I Feel Like a Piece of Bologna

Thursday, June 03, 2010

Transitions for Our Kids

Our DS and DIL bought a home. Their first. Hubby and I drove down to southern CA a week ago Thursday to help them move. We spent Friday at their apartment finalizing packing and cleaning there. They were supposed to get the keys to the house at 3:30 on Saturday, but the seller didn’t leave until 9:00! That meant that the carpet cleaners DS had hired had to be canceled and he ended up with a service that cost twice the price, scheduled for Sunday morning. Since it was a holiday weekend, his choices were limited, and since the previous owner had a big, hairy dog, carpet cleaning was of first importance. The second service never showed and no one answered the 800-number. I was able to email from our hotel, and DS finally got a call, but no carpet cleaners. He called a third service, which arrived about 2:00, putting us almost 24-hours behind on a tight schedule.

While the carpet was being cleaned, we moved boxes and boxes and boxes into the garage. The next day we moved all the furniture into the house, with a lot of help from DS’s friends. Since then we’ve cleaned and cleaned and scrubbed and scrubbed. A couple of DIL’s friends were champs at cleaning the kitchen and a particularly awful bathroom. I’ve developed a repetitive stress injury from scrubbing grunge from the aluminum window frames, washing windows darkened by smog, and scrubbing the kitchen from head to toe. (Wish my house was so clean!) I’ve spent the past several days unpacking the dozens and dozens of boxes of kitchen stuff while DIL went back to work. (Tried to get her to let me go to work, but no, I had to stay and unpack.) It’s been quite a process. I’ll unpack and arrange things where she thought she wanted them, and then she’ll come home from work and rearrange it all. But at least this way she can see how things fit and it’s saving her more time and energy than she even realizes.

We’re blessed to have kids who want us to be part of this process, and they’re blessed to have parents who have the time and inclination to help. DS in particular has valued the advice of parents who have owned a fixer-upper for years. Mom and Dad have both been able to share ideas, advice, and admonitions. The range of his new responsibilities is dawning on him as he realizes what he doesn’t know. On the other hand, he’s done an amazing job of tackling projects I didn’t think he could handle. These are the joys of parenting young adults, being able to help while at the same time letting go and enjoying an adult relationship with them.

Unfortunately, in the busyness of all of this, the other side of my sandwich has been neglected. I’ve only called Mom a couple of times while we’ve been here. Fortunately, my brother was able to spend the long weekend with her, so she’s been well cared for. But while I love my life, I continue to feel smooched.

Photo Courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons/vieuxbandit

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2 comment(s):

I am new to the Sandwich Generation as up until 2 months ago I had never heard of it - then it happened. I returned to work after having my third child - they are 7, 4 and 14 months. One week later my Mom (age 67) was diagnosed with terminal brain cancer. A bigger adjustment to a world that already included my Dad (age 67)being diagnosed with Parkinson's 4 years ago. How do I manage and where do I start?

By Blogger Tammy Badowski, at 9:46 AM  

Tammy, I hate to say "welcome," but welcome to the life of a GenSandwicher. It sounds as if you had your hands full before your mom's diagnosis. And now, your cup runneth over. Take a look through some of the previous posts. I offer a potpourri of thoughts and tips, and welcome input from my readers. I think you'll find hope, inspiration, ideas, and kindred spirits here.

Do you have a faith community? I know I couldn't do what I do without my belief in God and my like-minded friends. Keep us posted on your journey. Blessings.

By Blogger Pat, at 12:45 PM  

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