I’ve been ready to start this adventure for a very long time. I’ve been pushing things along for several years, trying to speed up the timetable, any way I could. But, somehow, all of the needed factors just wouldn’t come together. I have just had to be patient (never one of my strong suits) and wait until all was in order.
Now I understand why.
Jeff’s parents moved down here many years ago to be near us and our children. Although the relationship hasn’t always flowed smoothly, they have been nearby to celebrate the holidays with us, go to kid concerts, and generally share in the ups and downs of life. Leaving them aging and alone, with no family anywhere around, has been a long-time concern.
Early last year, Jeff’s mom’s ongoing health issues worsened, she went physically downhill quickly and passed away a few months later. That experience took a significant toll on Dad. He soon found a lady friend and seemed to be doing well, enjoying life and a new relationship. However early this year his health took a turn for the worse, and he never really bounced back. After another hospitalization in early October, it has become very apparent that he is no longer able to live independently. Reluctantly, he has agreed to go into assisted living at a facility in Indianapolis, near his daughter and other family.
We expected this time to be a gentle wind-down to retirement, but the last few weeks have been an unanticipated flurry of activity to develop a plan of action, find a suitable facility, arrange to manage his finances and sell his property, all while dealing with his existing health issues and needs. It’s been physically taxing as well as emotionally draining. It’s so difficult to see a loved one decline physically and cognitively.
Had this all come to a head AFTER we were on the road, everything would have been so much more difficult to manage. The fact that we were still here, is a blessing. It is a blessing that a spot just happened to open up at the assisted living facility nearest my sister-in-law. She is a nurse and has worked at similar facilities most of her career, making her the ideal person to oversee his ongoing health care needs.
It’s God’s perfect timing (again). We needed to be here long enough to see to Dad’s needs and get him settled into the best long-term situation. It’s been a scramble to get everything done, but by Thanksgiving Dad will be settled in his new place, his condo will be cleared out, and finances put in order. We’ll be able to head north as we planned next Sunday.
God is always good and I am truly thankful that His timing is so much better than mine.
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