So what does this picture of boxes suggest to you?
If you thought of 'moving,' you would be right!
We are facing a move and we are in the very early stages of that enormous task.
Long time readers know that I live in a 3 level town house with 2 full flights of stairs. Those who followed the blog during the years my mother lived here know that I also have 20 common area steps to climb to reach my front door. 49 steps in all! Some may also know that after 30 years of wonderful service to my family, this town house has gotten just too big. Too big to heat and cool, too big to clean (3 1/2 bathrooms for 2 people is too many toilets to clean and does anyone really need 11 closets,) and too much in taxes and upkeep for retired folks on a limited income.
I frequently hear things like - what a lovely setting, how well maintained, the neighborhood is great, and .... huh, just how many steps do you have??
Last year we began talking about moving. But my husband and I were of two minds - so the topic was dropped. This year, with me facing 69 and him facing 70, (yikes) the topic of downsizing brought us to the 'move' question again. The realization that on this day we are as young as we are ever going to be was a big motivator to get serious.
So the downsizing parade has begun. Lists of furniture and objects that will not travel with us are underway, conversations with the realtor and our bank are in full swing, and packing has begun. All very early stages, but started in earnest.
And let me say this now ... it is exhausting and at times overwhelming. We should have done this years ago, but years ago I was exhausted and overwhelmed with caregiving. The timing was never right for a move.
So I plan to take you with me during this 'adventure' (nightmare.)
Hold onto your hats!
In closing - a personal observation about aging as it relates to change and big decisions (and this move is a big decision.)
I learned through practical experience how the aging brain handles change. Not well! It looks very much like ... nothing. No movement, no change to upset the status quo. There is comfort and security in the known. Lack of action makes a weird sense as time marks your body and mind. Looking to conquer even small challenges is not on your radar.
In early senior years the brain may continue to function well, but it is easy to slip into faulty thinking about the future. "I don't need to change anything. Yes, this
I have seen the initial stages of faulty thinking in myself this year. Last year I was 100% in favor of selling the townhouse and moving. I saw the writing on the wall of our lives. It was all plain as it could be. We need to move. I was 68 last year.
This year I am 69 and the tiny web of resistance to change crept in. Again I started to push for a move. My husband started to see the logic of it, but I began to second guess myself. There were days when I wondered is this the right thing to do. After all, we are handling it now, how terrible would it be if we didn't change anything, yes, I know all these steps are not ideal for my disabled husband, but he has fallen only once on them. We are doing just fine now.
See what I mean?
Next year I am 70
and who knows what I will be able to talk myself into not doing.
The early stages ... the clock is ticking!
More to come.