The work of breaking down a household—not to mention sifting through the memories of a place where a good portion of our lives happened—continues as our time here grows short. We have one week before we have to be out, and we aren’t going to make that deadline even though we’re getting help from our son and his girlfriend. There’s just too much stuff. We’ve thrown away massive amounts of it, and boxed up more still to be taken to Goodwill. But the sheer volume of our possessions still makes moving it all seem insurmountable, even though we really have accomplished a lot.
Moodwise, I’m pretty stable given the stresses of moving and STILL not knowing where we’re going to go. It’s depressing and I am anxious as hell, but while I was inpatient, I learned the difference between being depressed over my circumstances and being clinically depressed. Not to say that situational depression can’t turn into clinical depression–it can, and did—but this time I’m experiencing sadness, disappointment, grief, and even anger. All normal emotions given what’s happening in my life right now.
We did get a bit of good news today: we’ve been approved for food stamps, which aren’t “stamps” anymore but a debit card which makes using the benefits a little more discreet (and thus more dignified). I just keep reminding myself that we paid taxes into the system for years and if there was any way to avoid needing help, we would have done it. We have also applied for medical assistance through our state’s health plan—we can’t afford insurance through the so-called “Affordable Care Act”—which should lower my prescription costs considerably and assuage our guilt over being unable to pay our ever-increasing medical bills. They go back three months from the date one applies, which would take care of my hospital stay (and boy, I’d hate to see the numbers from that episode!) as well as a couple of Will’s major expenses.
To say this is all a big relief is an understatement. Now, if we can just find someplace to stay for awhile, life will definitely be on an upswing. It’s just a shame I’ve had to lose so much in order to appreciate what I have left. Maybe that’s the purpose of all this…..maybe I needed a celestial boot in the backside so I could reconnect with what’s really important in life. I know I said earlier in the year that I wanted out of the rat race; well, not only did I get kicked out of the rat race, I discovered that as hard as life has become I still want to live it, and I want to live it authentically.
So goes my thinking on a cold Saturday afternoon as we prepare to go to my daughter’s home for dinner, which is always a treat. She is as authentic as they come, and I should be taking lessons from her. There is no pretense, no keeping up with the Joneses, no bullshit in the way she and her family live; and as a result, theirs is the happiest home I’ve ever been in. There’s nothing better than family, and no place like home.
Now, if we can just find one…..