Moving day is just the beginning
So Sunday is moving day. It seems like quite a long haul when I look back on the blog posts over the past few months, but in the grand scheme of things it’s been quite a speedy process. Or so I have been told by a nurse on my brothers ward. ‘These things normally take much longer’ she assured me. I didn’t need that assurance, all I could see was a great breakdown in the system where things could move a lot faster. As I have said in previously, no wonder the NHS is in crisis. Red tape everywhere. Things that couldn’t be done because a particular member of the team was on holiday, and no one else knew what to do. Part time job sharing staff, who work long hours in one shift, but then aren’t available for four days so no emails get read, and no ‘out of office response’ shows when you send anything over to them. I had no idea what information was getting through. I had to be very clever in my email trails and cc-ing in the right people.
But we are nearly there. Funding has been secured for care and a flat has been decorated and furniture installed. My brother has been over a couple of times to get the feel of things, but I do think it it going to take some time for him to get used to it. He has been living in his old flat for 18 years. Although I see his move as a wonderful thing, he sees that he has lost his old flat and there is no going back. He said last week that ‘it was the end of his life’. I had to turn that round and explain it was the end of that part of his life and now this was the start of something new. I see a new, easy to clean, less cluttered, safe and warm environment. He sees a very small flat that, smells funny with no where to put the kettle. (There is kettle space, he just couldn’t see it!)
It has taken a few trips to his old council flat for him to truly downsize, and I have to say he did so well to give up so many things including his video recorder and videos. He ditched lots of what he calls ornaments. I would call them tatty rubbish. A different perception of his life belongings. They were some things that made him happy, and many other things that he didn’t know he had. I would open a cupboard and say, ‘what’s that?’ He would stare at a hamster cage tucked under the water tank as if he hadn’t seen it before. (It was empty, no hamster involved in this tale!) Then he would just shut the door. I’d have to ask him to take it out, then he would walk around and just put it somewhere else. The clearing of the flat was a lengthy process!
We found Free-Cycle a real godsend. Someone who responded to my offer of a washing machine, actually took pretty much everything. Bed, table, fridge, chairs, wardrobe, airer, and even the very old curtains. So much better than sending it to landfill. He couldn’t see how his old things would fit into a very much smaller new flat. I am queen of storage, and am now a frequent visitor to Dunelm and The Range.
Everything fits, but he will need time adjusting. I don’t know how much they have helped on the ward with preparation for the next phase, but I am grateful that he has been safe and looked after while I have found him alternative accommodation. I have so much gratitude to all the clients who have moved appointments to enable me to attend meetings at short notice, and to those who have given me help and advice. From those who understand autism well and have helped with ways in which to understand how my brother sees things so differently, and to those who are in the system and have given me advice on how to approach the right people and to use the best terminology in emails…..You know who you are and I am so, so grateful!
When I look at this form a more woo woo perspective, I see that all the defining moments in this process have happened at New Moons and Full Moons. Last night was a Black Moon, a rare event in the lunar calendar where there are two New Moons in one month. A time to reflect and set intentions for the next phase. A new start.
New beginnings for my brother, and a new phase for me where I can help him adjust life in his new flat. A new phase for me where I can take some time out and do some yoga, reconnect and re-boot. A massage has been booked, and a little juicing detox for a couple of days next week will help too. I can’t help others unless I am on top form myself, so I started with a little Black Moon focus. Let the next phase begin!