by Bonnie Rae Nygren
My parents recently moved into a vibrant retirement community near where I live. It wasn’t a move dictated by crisis, but rather an act of love for themselves and our family. I don’t want to make it sound easy or without some measure of angst. It definitely wasn’t that. It was a lot of work and a lot of feelings and a lot of decisions all crammed into about six weeks. Their home of nearly twenty years contained sixty-five years worth of memories. We spent hours and days, sorting through both the priceless and useless things that we found in closets, drawers, and cabinets. A move into a space half the size required a lot of tough decisions.
The couple of weeks before the actual move were chaotic. What to take, what to donate, what to gift, what to sell . . . what to throw away. It became a jumble of second guesses and gut-punches. The only thing that was certain was that this felt like the exact right time to do it. They got to make choices and they got to be intimately involved in the process. Others are not so lucky. Those who allow “no decision” to become “the decision” are left with little control over even the smallest choices. I did not want that for my parents.
Nothing was taken lightly. It wasn’t just what sheets and towels and dishes to take. It was a lot of trips down memory lane. Old photos in ancient frames, books, letters . . . so many stories attached to so many things. I’m so glad we took the time to do it right.
When it came to the actual move it felt overwhelming. It took weeks to whittle down their choices. The thought of packing it all up was exhausting to even think about. The woman we were working with in the retirement community recommended a mover to us. She said she specialized in senior moves and the service they provided went “above and beyond.”
We met with Rebecca the following week.
And we were blown away.
RR Move Co., “senior move managers,” was like hiring a team of magicians. What this business offered was unlike anything I’d ever heard of. It sounded too good to be true. They provided help in the form of packing up every item in every room, hiring a team of physical movers for the big stuff, and then unpacking and decorating on the other end.
What? Unpacking and decorating?! Seriously?
Rebecca promised a smooth two-day move, at the end of which my parents would walk into a completely unpacked and decorated home. I was gobsmacked at the possibility. She and her team were wonderful with my folks and pulled off this move flawlessly.
They had done a walk-through previously to get a sense of furniture and other items to be moved. They took photos of how things were in drawers and closets and cabinets. They talked with my folks to get to know a little about them. On Day One of the move, we left them to pack up everything that was going, stage the large items, remove shelves, etc. Day Two was the moving truck and getting everything over to the new place.
I still don’t know how Rebecca and her team pulled it off. It was like magic at the end of the day to walk into their new home. No boxes, no packing material, no chaos. Shelves were hung, the bed was made, drawers and cabinets were populated. Pictures were hung, treasures were on display, and a there was a beautiful gallery wall of old photos in their bedroom. Even the refrigerator held everything just as it was arranged at their home.
My Mom is still emotional when she thinks of that day. It’s magic, I’m telling you! “Editing” was a luxury. Being free of the chaos was priceless. I know this was a hard move to make in many ways but the end result was a great comfort to everyone concerned. I’m so happy for them to be in a comfortable safe place and I think they are ultimately glad for the decision to make a move while they could control so much of the process.
For more information about senior move managers or to find one near you, visit www.nasmm.org
To read Bonnie Rae Nygren’s blog, visit www.insearchofthevery.com