Thursday, December 11, 2008

Moving Your Aging Parents - EARLY REVIEW

Moving Your Aging Parents - fulfilling their needs and yours before, during and after the move
by Nancy Daniel Wesson, Loving Healing Press, Sept. 2008
ISBN: 978-1-932690-54-5

We are the aging parents who needed to move! We sold our house, every corner and crevice overflowing with forty years of our family's life, and moved to an apartment. The overflow filled two storage garages and a storage room (and that was after we gave away some large items).

Author Nancy Wesson covers practical, soulful, and medical needs in a variety of thoughtful settings. She makes a compelling case for being sensitive to the emotions of someone who is downsizing, as well as looking out for the physical requirements. She includes a section on how to meet the special needs of elders who have low vision or hearing, Parkinson's or Alzheimer's disease with specific details known to experienced caretakers.

As I read Nancy's admonishments for caretakers to remember to be kind to themselves too, I was amused to realize that I needed that advice. I had been rather hard on me, demanding too much of myself at times during our move.

This guide goes so far beyond downsizing or even helping elders downsize, that it surprises me that I also found it easy to read, and easy to implement her ideas. I'm so glad to have received this particular book as part of my participation in the LibraryThing Early Review program, because I have made room in our new place, in my new life, in my heart, for things I would have put aside without Nancy's wisdom.

Retirement, it has been often noted, is not undiluted joy, but can also be a time of facing new limitations, whether they be physical, financial, social, or all three. Nancy shows how to put the joy back into the Golden Years.

I dusted off my portable sewing machine, and discovered it can fit under and on top of a desk, making the area dual-use, then added my laptop for a triple-play. I brought my hand-loom out of retirement, and have been inspired to combine weaving, beading, crochet and sewing, making unique designs. It is fun to give myself permission to ignore "the rules" and make something just for the pleasure of it.

I cannot recommend this handy collection of practical wisdom and nurturing encouragement too strongly. Even people who are not moving could benefit from reading Nancy's book, as many of us could benefit by sorting out our lives, belongings and activities to get a fresh start on the tangle of possessions and frenetic scheduling we call home.

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