Friday, September 02, 2016

Finding "home" in the midst of change

I won't lie. It's been a bit of a challenge for me, this change, from our home in Colorado to where we are now here in North Yorkshire through mid November. Living out of suitcases and a small room has been wonderful but has also left me feeling a bit lost in regards to my illustration work. Meaning, with not really knowing what to expect each day with Michael's mother while also trying to find a comfortable, temporary place to set up my studio to work, the desire to dive in and focus on deadlines has been lacking. I feel horrible, to say the least. There's a small inner desire to 'light the fire' but getting to the place to do so has been (emotionally) challenging.


No one said it would be easy. In fact, I've been continually addressing comments and emails where various individuals think we're on some long, extended holiday, when that is simply not the case at all. Yes, our first two weeks here were vacation time spent with family and boys but our primary purpose for temporarily relocating to England is to assist Michael's sister with finding a care home for their mother who can no longer care for herself.

With that said, they've visited a handful thus far and are scheduled to visit more in the coming week. They're currently eyeing one particular home visited that seems quite fitting for their mother. It's extremely clean, bright and cheery and has a wonderful group of staff members. Michael is hoping they're able to transition his mum within the next few weeks so he is able to visit her in the care home for awhile to ease the (natural) fears that will come attached to the transition as a whole.

We've a lot to do and hope to move/settle in the rental cottage within the next few weeks. I'm confident this will help ease some of our own feelings wrapped up in an emotional roller coaster. To have a place to call our own, space to unwind, to fully unpack, will be a Godsend. Things have been a bit delayed here but we're doing our best to go with the flow and trust all that is meant to be will fall in place when the time is right.
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15 comments

  1. It is very stressful what you are going through. But you can do it Alexandra, I know how strong you are.

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  2. I hope that everything resolves itself for you both satisfactorily - Michael's mother is lucky to have so much care and support from her son, daughter and yourself. Old age is such a difficult problem.

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  3. I hope that everything is getting sorted smoothly for you all. I understand it is feeling stressful. Big hugs to you all.

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  4. It's wonderful for Michael's family to have you both there to assist - I'm certain they consider you 'angels' of a very special kind. We all have to go through the period of our parents' aging and perhaps requiring help, and it is rarely something which goes smoothly. I now see Bob and I might have to eventually rely more on our children - sadly though I don't have positive feelings about those coming years!
    Hang in there dears - hops so much things work out well.

    Hugs - Mary

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  5. Alexandra, a year ago my favorite Great Aunt, who is now 98, finally had to be placed in a care facility as she was not able to do much for herself. . . well, she DID still do a lot for herself but was no longer steady enough on her feet to be safe doing it. When her family talked with her about it, she said she would consider it as long as she got to choose the home. She did. And much to everyone's surprise, she ADORES it. She is cared for so much better there than she could be at her home and she has many more activities than just reading (which had also become hard due to some degenerative eye issues in the last few years.) She attends mass every week, loves the food and the people and even made a "boyfriend" of sorts. :)

    I do not mean to make it seem trivial because I know it is one of the hardest things families have to consider/deal with. As we did with my own grandmother too. But I just wanted you to know that sometimes it does work out for the best and can be a boon to that person's life under the right circumstances. I will keep Michael's mother, and you all, in my thoughts as you go forward.

    And I hope that you will be able to settle in and find the peace and sanctuary of your work again soon. : )

    Always with my best,
    nicolas

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  6. I think you are handling it as best you can. Taking care of elderly parents is the primary responsibility of our (baby boomer) generation. And some have children at home heading for college even as they set up their parents in the care home. I'm facing this responsibility as well, but at this time, my mother is not quite ready for that kind of care. But it won't be long before my siblings and I have to take charge to take care of her. You had to travel so far, but it was the right thing to do. I took my art and writing tools with me to Connecticut last month when I drove to CT to stay with my mom before, during, and after her surgery. Was there for three weeks. But thought I should have stayed longer to help her with other things. But for now her sister is taking care of her. I expect I'll be in CT again to check up on my mother. I think what you are doing is commendable and loving. Caregiving is something all of us will either be needing or giving at some point in our lives! Journaling helps me through these days. Once she is settled in, you won't be worried about her, and can go visit her once in awhile. Love your little creation nook!

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  7. It's so wonderful that you are there for Michael's mother. Sometimes creating can be a challenge when there's a lot going on. I admire you very much and I know you will create amazing art when the time is right.

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  8. It sounds like you are being very strong and making the most of a very difficult situation. Don't beat yourself up about letting the illustration work fall behind a little, it's completely understandable and you'll be back up and running in no time once you've settled in. Good luck to you and your husband's family finding a care home - it may be hard, but it will be worth it for your mother in law. Thinking of you all! x

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  9. It is a very difficult time for you and your family especially when you are so far away from home. When you eventually get the chance to move into your cottage I am sure things will settle down for you and perhaps the Yorkshire landscape will give you new inspiration.

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  10. what you are going though is very stressful, finding a care home that is trustworthy and going to be a fit for the person can be very hard, so hopefully Michael an his sister are able to find a place :)

    Once you guys are in your own space, you should start to relax a bit. even having your own place for a short time should help

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  11. You are in my prayers always!!! I do truly hope things start to go better for you! It is a hard situation for all of you! Big Hugs!

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  12. I fully understand what you are going through. Wish you all the best.

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  13. Dealing with aging parents or in-laws is a huge adjustment, even without moving halfway around the globe. You get bonus points for remaining creative during all the upheaval.

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  14. Again, very well put. So glad you are giving updates here! :) LOVELY photos too.

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