by Kathryn Gregorio Palmer
Sneezing among dust-covered boxes and piles of memories, she stares down thirty-six years of living in the big blue Victorian on West Mill Road. Four children raised, launched, and re-launched, two weddings, four grand-babies and, wedged in amongst all that living and growing, seventeen years spent caring for her dying mother in this house. Months of conversation about which son or daughter would find a home for what items; Mom-Mom's dining room buffet to Virginia, the Hummel plates to Oregon, who wanted the wingback chair / who has room for the side tables? Scattered thoughts combine with lists and post-it notes to meet the overwhelming and generally chaotic task ahead. Closing approaches much too fast after this long wait to sell, the pieces begin to fall into place, the piles start to make sense: it will get done, it must get done. There's no turning back now, but she's got plenty of looking back left to do.
Kathryn Gregorio Palmer, author of When You’re a Parent with Diabetes, learned everything she needed to know while growing up at 27 West Mill Road. This piece is dedicated to her parents, who move out today - April 15th, 2008.