A Rather Unusual Day

My parents have been in an assisted living facility in Bothell for several years. Today, my family moved them to a facility in Kenmore with a higher level of assisted living.

As Phillip and I drove off of Capitol Hill, the snow was falling so heavily that it created near-whiteout conditions. It wasn’t sticking to anything, however. The car’s thermometer said it was 41 degrees outside. Still, we worried that we may have to turn back home if it got colder as we made our way north.

The snow turned to rain even before we reached Montlake, and we didn’t see snow for the rest of the day.

We kept our parents in the building lobby as packed and moved their belongings. My father was in no shape, physically, to help out. My mother was confused and anxious, obviously not understanding what was going on. It was best to keep them both out of the way.

My ex-brother-in-law and one of my nephews had vans, and my brother-in-law had a full-sized pickup truck. So Phillip and I were assigned, along with my niece and future-nephew, to packing and sorting, while others did the moving.

We left my parents in Bothell as the packers met up in Kenmore and, once the movers arrived, became the unpackers.

It was a strange experience to set up someone else’s apartment, without them there, deciding where they’d like their desk placed, where they’d like their pictures hung, how they’d like their kitchen cabinets arranged, and so on.

We all started work in Bothell around 9:00, and finished in Kenmore around 4:00, shortly before my parents were brought over. We gave my father a tour, showed him where everything was, and were able answer all his questions regarding where we’d put medications, and papers, his laptop, and so on. My mother still seemed confused, but a lot less anxious. Even though she may not have understood why she was there, I think she was pleased with the new apartment.

I think we were all pleased with the new facility. Everyone we met was friendly, and seemed happy. A neighbor from down the hall stopped by to say hello and chat (before my parents arrived). A woman from administration stopped by to welcome my parents.

At the end of the day, Phillip and I, and my sister and her husband, and my niece and my future-nephew, were the only ones left to say goodbye to my parents. As we walked down the hall together, my sister commented that she felt like she was leaving her kids at kindergarten for the first time. It seemed that we were all feeling that way.

Phillip and I, and my sister and her husband, and my niece and my future-nephew, went to dinner together, at Beardslee Public House, in Bothell.

It’s been an unusual, rewarding, exhausting, and fun day.

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