Just before Christmas my parents told me that they had decided to downsize. Their house, which admittedly large with a huge yard, was becoming more work than they wanted. Seems rational.
They began the process of de-cluttering and packing to get the house ready for sale, they listed and in fairly short order sold their house and found a new house to buy. Then the packing started in earnest.
I went over to help one day while the kids were at school.
For starters, my parents have moved a lot! I mean a lot. And I have never been emotionally attached to a house, expect perhaps the house in Hinton as it was so beautiful with a great view. But still, not that attached.
I was caught off guard by my emotions. I was unable to figure out why I was so upset. At first I thought it was because they weren't willing to move closer to me. But, no that wasn't it, maybe a little, but not really.
Then I realized that their house had served as a place of sanctuary during the hardest times of my life. There home was the one place I could go, with my very medically fragile young baby and just relax. The day our trip to Edmonton for the second surgery was cancelled because of a sniffle, I walked over all the packed bags and threw the kids in the car and drove to Mom and Dads. Once there I left them in their hands and I found a bed and slept. That was quite possibly my lowest moment, in retrospect and my parent's home was the safe haven I needed.
Now while logically I know it isn't the house that makes the difference. It wasn't the house that made their home my go to place to go. But, it is the house that is the backdrop for so many of my memories of my kids. Not as many as my own home, but still so many many memories. My kids have revelled in the love and relationship with their grandparents in that home.
The new house will have new memories and most importantly Grandma and Grandpa are still there. But, its still with a bit of sadness that I close that chapter of my life.
It makes me feel surprisingly sentimental, something I'm not used to feeling.
My prayer is that my parents will be happy and healthy in their new home and that we will continue to build so many memories.