There is so much to be done following the death of a close relative, especially for the executor of the estate. That responsibility has fallen to me following my mother’s death last month. Slowly but surely, though, I am making progress in handling her estate matters. I have the help of a good attorney, and she will likely schedule the hearing about the estate for the first week of March to make my job official. All of the larger items have already found their permanent homes, and I am grateful this was done in a short amount of time. I have a few things that I will try to sell to help with estate expenses, too.
I think I am slowly making some emotional progress as well. Life is slowly, but surely, starting to get back to a new normal without Mom in my life.
On Monday afternoon, I had the opportunity to make a hospital visit to see a friend’s elderly father. He is in the same hospital, and even on the same floor, where my mother was in early January, and I didn’t know how I would feel going back up there again so quickly. Thankfully, it was a good visit, and I just tried to focus on my friend’s family rather than my own sadness. As it turned out, I was there in the room with them when the same gentleman that I had previously worked with to get my mother transferred to rehab two different times showed up to assist my friend and her family get her father moved to the same rehab facility. I was actually able to help them in a small way during that process, as they asked me to stay for that conversation with this gentleman. It felt very much like a God-thing that I was there at that time when I had no clue that he would come during my brief visit. I think my friend, her mother and her father truly appreciated my help, so that made me feel that the trip to the hospital that I dreaded was actually a blessing for me, too.
Such is God’s plan so often, isn’t it? It gave me faith in the days to come that I will continue to be held in good hands and will have a good purpose in my life going forward, even if I don’t have a clue day-to-day what that purpose is going to be. It’s just one day at a time right now, and I am perfectly fine with that. Just as I saw so plainly over the past few weeks in taking care of Mom, I continue to see God’s hands in so many areas that are just working out on their own perfect way and in perfect timing. It happened regarding many of the aspects of Mom’s care during the month that she was ill, in some situations with money, and in situations with family and friends that were there at just the right time for her and for me, too. I talked at length to the Hospice chaplain about these God-things, and the Hospice chaplain broke down in tears when I finished telling her about all the things that I had witnessed during that time. These God-things continue to happen even after Mom’s death, too. Some issues that I thought would be problematic have been handled quite easily, even if it required some work on my part. I don’t mind work, and what a blessing that there have been no real issues so far.
Yesterday, I finally finished my thank you notes to friends and family members that sent flowers, food and memorials. I took the time to read all of the sweet notes and cards again, and I got very teary as I did that. I am so blessed to have such sweet friends in my life, and I will never forget how so many friends and family members came running when I needed their support. It makes me want to be a better friend going forward, and I think I will look into volunteering for the funeral food committee at church now, too. What an important ministry this is at a critical time in the lives of so many families, and the members of the church where my mother was a member just did a fabulous job feeding our huge family before the funeral. They even printed custom paper place mats with Mom’s name, the year she was born and the year she died. This is something I could definitely do going forward, ministering with love through food.
One thing I will always regret, however, is not having a non-family member around to take pictures for us on the day of the funeral. Friends and family members came that I have not seen in years, and I have no pictures from this day, except for a few pictures I took with my phone of the beautiful flowers before the funeral service. “Flowergate” is a story I will never forget from this time, and perhaps I will share a post about it sometime later on. My florist friend from the Houston area came to our rescue, for sure.
I have also begun to look at the impact to us financially, even though I’ve only given a little quick thought to this aspect. I will likely have the rent house in a couple of months, as well as a nice little nest egg to help with retirement in a few years. I will have some investment decisions to make soon, and I pray that God will continue to be in this process, too. Investing these days is so tricky, and I am not big on risk at this point in my life, for sure.
We are hoping to get out in the RV again in a couple of weeks, and I am looking forward to that opportunity very much. Most of the state parks have plenty of openings for the last week of February, so we will just wait to see what the weather looks like and decide where to go right before we take off. RV travel in the winter months in our area depends on weather conditions more than anything else, but if our present weather pattern holds for a couple more weeks, we should have beautiful weather for our little trip. It was 80 degrees yesterday, which is a little warm for this time of year, for sure. After all of the cold and snow we had while Mom was ill, I will totally take this gorgeous weather for a while, even though we have a little cold front moving in today.
I’m finally off to take the dogs to the groomer today. They are shaggy pups and have not been to the beauty shop since mid-December. I will be glad to see their eyes once again.