July 26, 2010


I don't know if I hate change more than anyone else

we are all creatures of habit

creatures of security

but I can sure speak for myself
when I say I dislike it.

change, that is.

I don't mind small changes, like rearranging the furniture and fashion trends. But lately, my life has been chock full of
big change.... the kind that rocks my foundation. It seemed to start with moving the Texas, after being a California girl for 50 years. It was a fun adventure until our business went south, taking our life savings with it.
Then, we lost Tom,
then Wyatt,

and dad had a stroke

all in the space of a year.

And the latest: facing the fact that my parents must move from the home they built, lived in, loved, and raised 4 daughters. A 41 year stay, that spanned careers, birthday parties, wedding receptions and great-grandchildren has come to an end. Their longtime nest is too much for them to handle now. They, and we, their daughters, are very sad to face this reality. We have tried to find another way, but the march of time and inevitability has taken over. The wolf: growing elderly, is at their door.

I am going to Fresno in 2 weeks to help my parents move into an assisted living facility. It is beautiful and elegant and honors their dignity. But it means leaving their home. The hardest thing was hearing my mom cry on the phone when I asked her about it. She had to hand the receiver off to dad and I listened to him try to be brave as he reasoned that this move is what is best. His head knows it's true; his heart wasn't fully convinced. If there is one thing dad and mom always have made clear, it is that they want to die peacefully in the place they love best, their home. . . . and now that will not happen. My dad, who has always been strong and in charge, now sounds weaker and resigned.

I hate that.

I will photograph their home and all of its lovely rooms before we dissemble the best of it to move into their new place., To ease the transition, my sister Marsha and I will do our best to make their new apartment feel just like their old home. I am sad because this signals the end of an era and the beginning of their last days, or hopefully, years, on this earth.

I hate that.

Then I will photograph their new place . . . and I am sure it will look beautiful with all of their things in it. I'll keep a stiff upper lip and be strong for them and offer encouraging words that convince them, and myself, that this is a good thing. . . . because it really is the best thing for them now. I will focus on the positives: they are in beautiful, safe facility and we have peace of mind that they are getting the help they need with cooking, cleaning and being checked on often.

As daughters, we will keep looking forward, taking one day at a time, knowing more change is to come.
This kind of change is hard and

I hate it.


The previous emotions were my initial reaction, written 5 days ago. As I re-read them today, it sounds a little dramatic, but that is how I was feeling at the time. Change is a process, and I am happy to report that we are all adjusting well, dare I say, even excited about the move. This new facility is really beautiful, I hear the food is fantastic, and every need is met.... every whim catered to. I would swear my parents are moving onto a luxury cruise ship, complete with a European chef and perky cruise director.

So . . .

everything is going to be okay

after all

and I am looking forward to visiting them on the SS Fairwinds.

their new place is called the Fairwinds,


isn't that funny? it even sounds like a cruise ship.


Jennifer Gibbs Kambourian said...

I agree with every emotion you expressed in this post--thank you for putting into words what each of the daughters feels. Thank you also for taking photos of their home--recording that special place where so many wonderful memories began. Also, thank you for being there for them and making sure to bring some of their old home into their new home--what a gift you have for making everything go well--that's why I'm so thankful you'll be there. xoxo-Jenn

K. McCarthy said...

what a beautiful post. I am not even 45 minutes from there. it would be great to see you if you have time. I could head up there to say hi and and make a day of it and you could see my kids, too. I'm always headed that way to take them to the zoo, or to go Trader Joe's. if that facility is anything like the one here in town they will love it and they will be well taken care of. there is a sister from our stake that lives at the one here in town and I love to visit her there. they always have piano music playing and songbirds in cages in the entryway.

Grammie Star Wars said...

Now that is what life is, true feelings about change.

Change is a challenge for all of us every now and then.

To see our parents leave their dream of where they had wanted to finish their earthly life. That too is hard.

There is always another door that opens for us and we are never alone. He is always just there wanting us to trust him more each day.

Your family is blessed to have had the many gatherings in a loving home, with memories and pictures that will never be taken from you.

This new cruise ship looks very inviting, and may peace be on all of you.


Brittany said...

This is a huge change but I know it is for the best on this beautiful cruise ship!

LaRee said...

Out of curiousity Mom and I drove by the Fairwinds. A cruise ship is no exaggeration!...I'm sure this will be the best alternative for them...we wish them well!

Grama Peechee said...

Diane, most of my days are free right now and if I can be of any help I'd love to come and pitch in. I'm fairly proficient at boxing, cleaning and hauling... just let me know.


About Me

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I married my high school sweetheart 34 years ago in the LDS Temple. I have 4 children (3 married, and a 14 year old) and 6 grandchildren. I lived my entire life in California, until 6 years ago. I now reside in San Antonio, Texas. The most important thing to me is my family; I have invested the most in them and it has paid great dividends. I love doing anything creative that beautifies my surroundings and I love nature. I minored in Art and majored in Interior Design at BYU, yet, my profession is a Tax Preparer.

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