Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Decluttering and Downsizing

If you have read my posts all along, you will know that I spent a lot of time early in my "sabbatical" decluttering my house and downsizing the junk we had accumulated over the years. It was looking pretty good, and then my son moved his stuff back home.  Simultaneously, I started helping my Mom downsize her many collections.

Take my Mom's books.  I spent many months reading, sorting, dusting, and giving away piles and piles and piles of books from every corner of my house.  Most of them I read but some I discovered I had either started and couldn't quite get into, or just wasn't interested in that kind anymore. My shelves were dust free, orderly, and I could see what color the shelf was for a change! I had room for every book ON A SHELF! There was a point in time when no book lived in my house without a home of its own, rather than stuck in a box or bag or cornered in a room unable to breath.

I was so proud of myself.

So why, when I am so at peace, would I want to bring more books home from my Mom's while I am helping her find such order on her bookshelves? Last fall, I helped her downsize her large collection of books, discard old magazines, and sort through boxes and bags and more boxes and bags of books, puzzle books, and magazines, only to find my shelves cluttered again! Since my Dad died, we have sorted and tossed and given away even more things, including more books. Her shelves are dust free and looking darn good now.  And mine are over crowded again and as I write this post, I have a bin of books sitting on the floor to my right, waiting to be loaded into my car to take home.


When I was first unemployed on sabbatical, I was thrilled to have the time to read.  I had been looking forward to a time when that's all I had to do.  Of course I had hoped it would be a few more years down the road but since I had nothing better to do (at first), why not spend my day reading? But now I am getting more contracts and taking care of my Mom.  In a sense, I am back at work.  And I have a kindle now so I shouldn't be collecting as many hardcover books.

I need to learn to let books go on without me.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Mom's set back

Well, I might need to extend the "80 Days with Judy" tour to include 30 more.  Please, pray that it does not become 180 days, as Mom suffered a set back and had to postpone her knee revision surgery by 1 - 2 weeks.  Let's hope all goes well from here on so she can finally be without all the pain she is in.

Last week Mom contracted pneumonia AND just to make things a little more exciting......acute kidney failure. Tuesday started out beautifully, we planned a day of  running errands and going to doctor appointments. She has been cooped up in the house so long I wanted to give her some time out watching people and feeling "normal" again. Tuesday the confusion and tremors were so much worse, it made moving difficult and getting in and out of the car quite challenging. After her pre-surgery blood tests, breakfast in the park, stopping to make a donation at the Hospice, we stopped home to re-curl her hair (I am NOT a hairdresser and forgot the shellac hairspray) and while we were there I made her call her doc to see if the tremors she was experiencing were caused by all the medicines she is on and request that he see her. Her tremors had progressively become worse over 5 days and she was so much more confused and forgetful. 

She had also developed a cough. When she called her doctor, the nurse told her to get over to the ER right away, that there was an abnormality in her blood work, that her potassium was high. Long story short, the next set of blood tests at the ER suggested she had 17% kidney function. That night, she was hospitalized.

She is home now and feeling much better.  They want to try to clear up the pneumonia and get her physically stronger before she goes into this surgery. She feels bad that I have to stay longer because she knows I am missing my husband, dog, and grand kids.  What I say to that now is - "All in good time Mom. You took care of me many times over the years, and my kids as well when I was too sick or injured to care for them myself while Dave was at work. And you did that when you had a full time job yourself. 

I got you now."