20 August 2010

This is Not My Beautiful House Part 4

So, it was a bit of an adjustment from being just Kevin and me to a "family". We ate dinner next door a lot, which was good and bad. Good that I didn't have to cook and bad that we gained weight because the sister-in-law doesn't cook healthy and bad that we didn't have regular time together as a couple anymore.

It took a little while to create a sort of wedge and boundary between us. Kevin and I are independent and next door, well, next door not so much.

Kev's parents were feeling left out as well. They were used to their kids being nearby and now they were 25 minutes away. Again, this is a tight-knit family. If you get one, you get ten more. But the Moody House was a split-level with the in-laws living upstairs and the aunt & uncle living downstairs. Retirement was not a worry for anyone because they had each other. It was a wonderful set-up for everyone.

Then Uncle Don died unexpectedly. That was a blow to the family like no other. Suddenly everyone's plans shifted and changed and fell apart. This was also the time that Kevin was sick/diagnosed so bonus round points for us.

Problem solving began. We had over three acres between the two properties so we would just move the parents up here. But how? and where? and when?

They stuck it out in the Moody house as long as they could, in attempt to not uproot the Aunt who didn't want to leave. Although frustrating, we understood: it was where she'd lived for twenty years and it's where she felt closest to her husband. But push became shove because the father-in-law was retiring. (He worked well past retirement age...he still works part-time actually because he is badass)

Then The Aunt became sick. She was hospitalized over Thanksgiving weekend and was gone on Tuesday. Heartbreaking. She just didn't want to live without Uncle Don and she didn't want to move.

Now we're mourning (times two) and we're closing a house and we're moving Kev's parents, essentially, in with us. Thankfully at this time I wasn't working. If I had been working, this would be written from the cozy confines of an asylum.

House shopping began. Kevin & I had just gone through this for our new house so it felt like deja vu all over again, except on a much smaller scale. Trying to get six people to agree on anything was impossible. As much as we said "It only matters what you think", they wanted us to feel comfortable too. Also, because it was in the b-i-l's yard, they wanted their approval on the outside appearance as well.

Days blended into weeks into months as we tried to close a house that's been a home for nearly thirty years. Going from a 1300 square foot house to a 399 square foot house is a challenge like no other. To say that we inherited a lot of stuff is an understatement.

Finally, the house sold and we closed it up. Finally another house was chosen and ordered. It sounds so anticlimatic now but it sure wasn't. The in-laws lived in their fifth-wheel, in our driveway for seven weeks. Seven. Weeks.

Seven weeks of our every coming and going being noted. "You were late to work today" or "Did *firegirl* have to get something at the store last night?" Seven weeks.

Finally their house arrived and was set-up. It took about a day to move in and unpack. They now live on the other side of our shop so we have a buffer and the B-i-l is part of the Witness Protection Program.

No comments: