Thursday, August 28, 2008

Moving. Ugh.

Packing. It consumes every waking non-hospital minute of my life. I’ve been in full-on combat mode for over two weeks. If I had to make a list of things I most detest in life, very near the top would be moving, or moving house, as the British say. It is just such a huge amount of work.

Dutch and I have lived in this house for four years—one of my longest stints, five years is my record for one house. I’ve moved a lot. We’ve had four great years here; it’s a wonderful house, with a beautiful west-facing view of the tundra and a large deck that catches the afternoon sun.

Over the last two weeks I’ve watched the house slowly come apart, as pictures came down off the walls, bookcases were emptied into boxes for shipping (my precious few) or for donation to the library, shelves were emptied of their Yupik artwork. I’m about down to bare furniture, and the house is feeling empty.

Despite a good amount of heartless tossing of old things, there are still stacks and stacks of boxes to be picked up by Bob the mover guy on Monday for delivery to the city dock and loading on a barge to Seward. Leaving Bethel is not as simple as renting a U-Haul.

When I’m not actually packing boxes, I’m thinking about what needs to be packed, and when, and how to organize the great help I’ve been receiving. Breezy and Summer have been lifesavers of infusing energy and get-er-done attitude. And they’ve moved lots of heavy stuff, too. They brought their friend Liza along, and she’s been a big help. Joan and the boys came over last night for pizza, and they made short work of some big boxes full of camping gear. One shed now completely empty {dusting her hands and feeling satisfied}. Second shed nearly so. Third shed holds all the boxes packed so far. By the end of Labor Day weekend, the house should be nearly empty.

Three days later I leave for a spirituality festival in California, at which I have been invited to speak. So along with all the packing, I’ve also been putting together slide shows, scanning lots of old photographs I have going back more than thirty years. I will see old friends there that I haven’t seen for a very long time, including two young women that I love dearly, and had a hand in raising for about five years when they were children. I think of them as my nieces, but I love them more as my daughters. I haven’t seen them since 1991.

On the way back from California I gave myself a short visit with Dutch in Kenai before flying to Bethel. Then it is a two-day turnaround (during which I have to go to the dentist and take both dogs to the vet for their health certificates) to fly out to Seattle to see Dad and Stepmom before driving with a friend to the Women’s Harvest Celebration in Montana. Whew. Then back to Bethel with my friend Jody (mentioned previously on the Arctic Adventure and the post Jody’s Trials) for five days to clean the house up completely, distribute the last of the wine collection to friends, and ship the dogs to Kenai. And have any more dental visits that are needed (there’s this one tooth…).

By October 1st Jody and I will be in Anchorage, hopefully picking up my new (to me) car, and then going to see the orthopedic surgeon about hopefully replacing my hip. Like the next day. The injury I wrote about in April of 2007 caused a rapid progression of arthritis, to the point that my hip is now bone-on-bone with no joint space left. For the last three months, it has been constantly painful, at times awful. So I’m thinking hot lights and cold steel. To cut is to cure. Everyone I’ve talked to who has had a hip replacement, and is more than a year out, says they are only sorry they waited so long to get it. Besides, I’m behind schedule. Both parents and my younger sister have had six hips replaced between them. It definitely runs in the family.

Stating the obvious here, but posts will be pretty sporadic for a while.



Blogger Allen said...

Wishing you and yours the very best of luck.


Thursday, August 28, 2008 11:14:00 PM  
Blogger rlbates said...

I agree with you about moving, but if I had to move every five yrs or so maybe I wouldn't have so much clutter. :)

Hope the move and the hip surgery go well. Best wishes.

Friday, August 29, 2008 4:12:00 AM  
Blogger Ian Furst said...

good luck with the move.

Friday, August 29, 2008 6:41:00 AM  
Anonymous rummuser said...

My wife of 40 years, my son and I have lived where we now live for the last 18 years. The 22 years before that were spent in eight different homes as I was in a transferable job. My wife did most of the packing and unpacking while I was busy with my career. After we moved in here, on two occasions, I set up bachelor's camp in a different town for a year the first time and for six months the next time.

That gave you some common factors between the two of us.

Now the second part of my story - I was diagnosed with bilateral idiopathic necrosis of the femoral
heads when I was 37. I got the first hip replacement done when I was 42 the second when I was 44 and got both revised when I was 62! I am now 65 and going strong.

Any time you want moral support, just holler!

Strange how I found you right? You can learn more about me in my blog! I shall visit your blog again and see if you respond to this comment.

All the best.

Friday, August 29, 2008 8:20:00 AM  
Blogger NurseExec said...

lawd, I hate moving. Here's wishing you the best, and good luck with the hip.

Friday, August 29, 2008 1:41:00 PM  
Blogger Dorothea said...

Yes, moving is horrid. Best of luck to you: may moving go well and may your hip be pain-free!

Friday, August 29, 2008 8:13:00 PM  
Blogger Liz Ditz said...

I am moving from a big house (of 10 year's habitation) to a little house (75% reduction in size). It has taken months, and it is weary, weary work.

You have my complete sympathy.

I do hope the surgery goes well and your recovery is swift and complete.

Sunday, August 31, 2008 9:40:00 AM  
Blogger Christina LMT said...

Good luck with everything! You have my sympathy regarding both moving *shudder* AND surgery. I hope you recover swiftly from both...:)

Sunday, August 31, 2008 7:18:00 PM  
Blogger TBTAM said...

Wow. That;s a lot to take on.

Best wishes for a successful move and a quick recovery.

Saturday, September 06, 2008 3:19:00 PM  
Blogger Norma said...

We were in our last house 34 years. No basement, no attic, so we'd been good about not saving things.

Good luck with the surgery. I have just a touch of osteoarthritis that wakes me up sometimes at night, and yours is certainly worse.

Tuesday, September 09, 2008 7:58:00 AM  
Blogger Kim said...

I'm tired just reading about all you have to do to move! : )

Good luck with your surgery. I, too, have never heard anyone say they have regretted their hip surgery.

Here's to a speedy recovery!

Wednesday, September 10, 2008 9:25:00 AM  
Blogger Laura said...

I know it seems like a lot to take on, but you'll do fine. You're a strong woman!

Besides, I'd rather be there than here right now anyhow! ;-)


Saturday, September 20, 2008 9:42:00 AM  
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