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Home. Again

Many of you who have been reading for awhile know that Troy and rent the house I grew up in from my parents.

Any of you who have been reading this blog since last September know that my mom has MS – Multiple Sclerosis.  She landed herself in the hospital last fall, which turned in to a stay in a long-term care facility for a few weeks.

That was a stressful time for everyone.  My mom wanted to be home, my dad wanted my mom safe (and also wanted her home), and my sister and I who both work full-time set up a visitation schedule that included bringing dinners because my mom was not a fan of the facility’s food.

I distinctly remember driving home one night freaking out.  Is this our family’s future?  At that moment, I called my dad and said “sell the house you live in now, and move in with us”.  My dad laughed and brushed it off, but I persisted.  I needled and pressed.  They both brushed it off for months.

Right after Christmas, I was the first one to family dinner.  While Jack was playing, I asked mom and dad how they were doing.  They glanced at each other and said “we’re managing”, to which I responded “should life be about managing, or enjoying”?

I’m not sure if it was that conversation, or just a culmination of things happening, but they relented, and the planning began.

At this point, the architect has finished the plans, and we’ll be heading towards the permitting process soon.  Construction will likely start in August or September, and god willing, it will be well progressed in time for the November rainy season.

My little family will have the upstairs floor, and a small portion of the existing basement.  The basement will also be pushed out and over to add space; essentially creating a roomy and private one bedroom apartment.  The addition to the side will add another bedroom upstairs, which will become our new master.  It will be nice to have a third upstairs, as the third bedroom was in the basement, leaving us to plan for Jack and #2 (whenever that will happen) sharing a bedroom.

I have some friends who can’t imagine living with their parents, but it has never given me a second of pause.  My family is tight, and we look out for each other.  My parents have been my rock and have been so instrumental in pushing me to follow my dreams.  Their emotional, and at times financial support has made so many things possible in my life.

A friend of mine said that having them move in would be like a way for me to thank them for everything, but I don’t see it like that.  Even if they had never gone above and beyond for me, I’d still want them living with us.  Life is not about paying back what you’ve taken, but rather doing the right thing simply because it is the right thing.  I love my parents and I’m so excited to have them move in with us.  As  challenging as it might at times, it won’t be any more difficult than worrying about them all the time.

When I was 5, my parents bought some property and were planning on building a house.  After all the plans were finalized, they realized the cost would be more than they could afford.  They put that dream on hold, and started looking for a ready built place.  Driving around one day, my dad found this house, and gently “broke in” and looked around.  It was instant love for the whole family.  Even when I left home and lived in other cities and states, I always considered this house my home.  My little town was a fabulous place to grow up, and I wouldn’t have traded it for anything.

My parents loved this house as well, and only left it reluctantly in 2007 when it became too much upkeep for them, and it wasn’t accessible for their gimpiness.  They bought a condo next to my mom’s best friend and were fine there for a few years.  Both of them love this house, the town, and the view.  Having them come home again is what is best for everyone.  They get to live where they love, and we get to help them live independently.  We get stability in our living situation, and they get to live with a four-year-old naked superhero who makes everyone smile.  They get homemade meals, and air dried laundry.  We get to be around people we love and respect.  There are only winners in this situation.

Afterall, life should be about living, and not surviving.

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40 comments on “Home. Again”

  1. I cannot thank you enough for this post! My husband and I just purchased a very large (and expensive!) house that has enough room throughout to create an in-law apartment in the basement while providing enough space for our family of 3 and frequent visits from my parents. My mother in law also has MS and lives alone in the south in a huge house – it is time for her to move to be with us and this seemed like the best solution – both financially and emotionally (given worry, proximity, etc…) My own parents are horrified at the prospect of her living with us, so that has been a major source of guilt for me. We plan to have, basically, separate spaces, and are trying to work through everyone’s concerns. This post hits it right on the nose and I’ve forwarded it to my husband as well, so a huge thank you!

    • I would never feel guilty, or never apologize for doing the right thing for people you love. Your parents sound jealous, and as hard as that is, you can’t control for that. What you can do is what is best for your mother-in-law. I know you guys will make it work!

  2. No doubt in my mind…you and your family are going to do just fine. You have the right attitude and the right heart for it. ๐Ÿ™‚ There’s not anything that you all will not be able to handle. I have this quote taped on my monitor at work and it says…”The will of God will never take you where the Grace of God will not protect you” I believe this with all my heart.

  3. Thats amazing, it sounds like a wonderful idea! I’m really close with my parents as well, I can relate completely. My mom doesn’t have MS but she has a slew of other health problems, that are slowly diminishing what she can do. It’s nice to read about someone not being upset at the idea of their parents moving back in. Your new blog posts always make my day a little brighter, you’ve even inspired me to *gasp* take on canning.

    • I think it is awesome they’re moving in, and it can’t come soon enough! I wish you and your mother the best of luck.

      Yay, welcome to the world of canning. We need more victims…errrr participants.

  4. I’m a relatively new person on your blog-life window, and haven’t commented until now. So: “way to go, girl!” And, from personal similar experience, the real winner here is Super Hero Jack. The time he will get with your folks is going to be such a gift to him. Sending good thoughts to you.

  5. Good for you!! AND good for THEM!!! Basically this is what my sister and her husband did. After Mother had a stroke she was able to live alone for another year or two. Then Mother sold HER house and my sister sold HER house and they bought and redid another house that works perfect for them! Mother has the master bedroom and private bath and this is simply working out so good!! They have been together for 4 years now. It is a WIN! WIN! situation!

  6. I love your view on this. While I can’t relate to the closeness you have with your parents, I can imagine I would respond in a similar fashion. Thank you for sharing this. Its nice to hear good things like this!

  7. THis is beautiful. I am only 22 but decided a few years back that should my parents ever get to the point where they can’t live on their own, they should live with me and my husband. I can tell that they don’t agree. They want to be independent. We will see how my dilemma works out. I am so glad that yours did. I am sure that Jack will be their little joy and be better than any medicine that they could receive.

    • I don’t think someone gives up their independence because they live with others. I hope some day your parents see that too!

      We lived with my in-laws for 6 weeks after our lease was up, and before this house was available. I LOVED IT! We were able to support each other and pitch in to help with all the chores. It was during that time I finally got why most cultures co-habitat. We’ve got it all wrong in the US!

  8. Congrats and good luck on the construction project ๐Ÿ™‚ It will be nice to have the family under one roof.

  9. Atta girl. I have several friends who have done this and it’s been all to the good.

  10. My parents have been trying (unsuccessfully) for years to persuade my grandmother to move in with them. I’m glad your parents were easier to convince! I hope this works out well for you ๐Ÿ™‚