The eagles have landed. The elder eagles, complete white pure white on the top of their heads, also known as Grampie and Thyrza. All the preparations of the last month have come to fruition in this move from 3-4 hours away on the Olympic Penninsula to just 8 or so minutes across town. They are, I hope (it's almost midnight) sleeping deeply in a guest suite at the Retirement Complex where they will make their new home. The moving truck comes tomorrow. Today, while that van was packed up, overseen by them and middle brother, B, we were setting up the new HD flatscreen we all (her kids and his) went in together to buy them for Christmas. Moving over a recliner to replace Grampie's, which we wouldn't cry about if it fell off the truck. Washing up dishes we brought over for them to use until theirs get unpacked.
The dishes we took over used to be my mother's. She bought them one Christmas when our whole family would celebrate together. For years afterwards she was frustrated because she meant only to keep them until a majority of them broke. But she couldn't manage to break the darn things. When we moved her, J got those dishes for his first apartment, and he couldn't manage to break them either. And now Grampie and Thyrza have them. When Thyrza saw them tonight, she decided they seem more durable than the yellow china dishes that used to live up at the lake place Beve's parents owned. More durable is right.
Thyrza and I walked around their new apartment tonight, mentally placing their furniture. She's excited by the larger space they have to work with here. As we were leaving (until early tomorrow when we'll begin the hard work of unpacking, organizing, being their maintenance folks, their taxis, their...everything), Thyrza said, "I'll probably be calling you a lot for a while. I have a hundred questions." That's why they're here, I told her. And that, I think, may be why my life is as flexible as it is. I told them we'll make sure I'm programmed #1 on their phones.
It's a relief to have them here. And it kind of takes my breath away that it actually happened. Even though we knew it was best, and Thyrza's daughter saw it as an answer to prayer, I knew in the end, they might have second, third or fiftieth thoughts about it. But here they are and we're ready.
At least I think we're ready. But here's the thing I told them tonight, when they were thanking us for our hard work (which wasn't really that hard). When our children were little, I knew I could call them at a moment's notice and they'd babysit our chublets. When I had to work, and a child had a fever, Grampie and Thyrza always had an open door, plenty of Top Ramen, and the futon in the back room made up into a bed by the time I'd driven the mile and a half from our house to theirs. We're a little farther away than that now, but it feels like full circle, to be able to take care of them. Exactly what we should be doing.