My People

My People
My matched set of grandchildren - Oliver and Cosette

Monday, July 30, 2012

Do I Stay or Do I Go?

I migrained all day yesterday, slept eleven hours and am migraining again today. I tried the *good stuff* for it last night and it helped me sleep but didn't cure the pain. Today I'm trying a new tactic, we'll see if that works. I'm having these headaches more frequently and for longer periods of times but... I'll see the doctor next week and hopefully they'll have a suggestion/solution.

We're anxiously awaiting confirmation that the mountain house that mom and dad want to buy is indeed theirs. It's a nice big house on a lake, it has three and a half bathrooms and four bedrooms, a nice "daughter suite" in the basement with room for me to have my own bedroom, bathroom and a big open space for my living room furniture and kitchen table. So... minus a kitchen, it's my own little apartment. It has a separate entrance and looks out on the lake. There is to be an inspection Wednesday and if all things go well, they'll close on it mid-August.

To understand what a huge deal this is... you should know that my parents have lived for thirty-six years in a little ranch house with four bedrooms and one bath. The kitchen is so small that my dad and I can barely be in there together. The mountain house doesn't have a huge kitchen but it's about twice the size of their current kitchen and open to the next room so it will be nice and roomy. My parents' house is about 1100 square feet and the house they're *hopefully* buying is about 2600 square feet. Big, big deal!

All this leads to the question of where I will live. Here are the factors that I'm considering and I hope guys will weigh in with your thoughts.

1. I love, love, love being here with my parents, my kids next door and all the fur-babies. I was #2 of five kids so there was always someone else around and I started having kids when my brothers were 4, 7 and 10 years old (and Jim was 20) so there were always little ones that needed/deserved our attention. I've never been able to just hang out with my parents and I love it.

2. I always said that "Austin was my youngest but Cody is my baby". Cody's just the kid who does the best job at taking care of people. Maybe it's that whole middle child thing, I don't know. He's a sweetheart and I have missed him soooo much! I'm not ready to leave him and I don't want to go months in between seeing him again.

3. Finally, after two years of having a daughter-in-law, I'm really getting to know Marquee. She's so intelligent that you really have to get beyond small talk with her to appreciate the depths of her personality and to understand what interests her. I love having that daily access to her and Cody. And, just for the record, I don't go over to their house much. they usually both come over in the evening after Cody gets home from work and we all hang out in my room watching tv and playing with the fur-babies.

4. There is a decent possibility that I will be starting work soon with the agent in Fayetteville. (for those of you who are not Georgians, Fayetteville is about fifteen minutes south of where my parents live, which is about fifteen minutes south of the Atlanta airport). If/when I start working there, it is likely that I will not work a five day work week which means that I could live part time in Riverdale and part time in the mountains.

5. I've asked the Fayetteville agent to "sponsor" my sales agreement with State Farm so that I can do fill in/temp work for other agents. I've done this in the past and it works well for me. I just need to get an agreement in place and make sure I'm up to date on any changes within the company. There are a lot of agents who need a little help here and there but can't commit to bringing someone on with regularity. Most people can't afford to work temp hours but I don't need to make a huge amount but I need to be able to cover my doctor bills, prescriptions, insurance, gas, etc. If I split my time between Riverdale and the mountain house, I can work for anyone in those areas.

6. If I'm splitting time, I need to have creature comforts set up in both places which means I will need to buy a tv and be able to pay for the internet and satellite service at the new place (and the utilities, to as much of a degree as I can). I know this seems more like a luxury than a necessity but... it's how I deal with being alone, having contact with the outside world. We can easily furnish both places as I have my furniture in storage and dad inherited some furniture from grandma (who is settling into her new senior living facility). But I need a second tv to make it work in my nest.

7. Living here (in Riverdale) helps me deal with the pain better and I think it helps my mom deal with her pain issues better as well. We sort of cover for each other based on which one of us is dealing with less pain that day. That helps me to push through on days that I might not otherwise. One or the other will do the dishes, deal with the animals, take Marquee to school, run errands, etc. Having someone else close by who can validate what you're feeling is a huge help. I don't LOOK sick. People tell me all the time that I don't look like I'm in pain. I'm not sure what "in pain" looks like but I'm not going to dramatize it as a ploy for sympathy. I hurt most of the time. My mom hurts most of the time. It's just what we live with.

8. My parents Riverdale house only has one bathroom. It's not nearly as big a deal as it was when I was growing up with four brothers, two parents and me in a house with one bathroom, but it is not as nice as having my own private bath. So, although we're not really crowded with just the three of us... and in an emergency we could use Cody's bathroom next door... there's only one bathroom here.

9. My mom has decided to go ahead and work another year as a crossing guard. Pop will probably retire in about a year and a half. So, at least until about January 2014, they will not be full-time in the mountain house and *somebody* needs to keep watch over it. It's fairly remote but really only about a five-ten minute drive to my brother's house.

10. I don't qualify for medicaid or food stamps while living here with my parents because the household income is too high (even though I'm not contributing to it). If I lived alone at the mountain house, if I wasn't working, I could qualify. This is not my CHOICE, you understand, but I also have to take into consideration that there is medical care that I need and pharmaceutical intervention that I require that has to be paid for somehow. And if I'm living in the mountain house and not working, I'd have to pay for food somehow.

11. My mom eats better if there's someone around to cook for her. Pop and I both enjoy cooking. When Pop golfs after work, I cook dinner. When Pop makes breakfast on the weekends, I clean up afterwards. I keep track of what we need at the store and try to match coupons to what we need (sometimes it works... this week we didn't buy anything that I had a coupon for). I enjoy cooking more when people actually enjoy and appreciate my efforts (Austin never did, much).

12. Having the mountain house as a residence means that I can continue to keep my car registered there, I can keep my voter registration there, etc. Keeping the car registered there is a big deal because in the Atlanta metro area you have to have an emissions test every year which is costly and aggravating if the car doesn't pass the test. Voting in White County is waaaaay easier than voting in a busy, crowded suburban county. There are people who waited HOURS to vote in the last presidential election here. There are only 14,000 registered voters in White County.

13. Austin. He won't move to Riverdale. I can't keep tabs on him from him. He doesn't drive yet. Doesn't have a car. Doesn't have internal motivation, much, except I have found out that he went to the Vocational Rehab place and they are going to start him on a work evaluation program that lasts ten days, afterwards, if he does well, they will "slide him into a job". They provide the transportation to the work evaluation. I'm not sure about the transportation to work. I want to be able to remove any obstacles to his success. Being there helps me help him. Being away from him breaks my heart.

14. I miss the mountains. I miss the clean air and the beauty all around me and wonderful community there. I miss my church there, even if I wasn't faithful to attend, I always knew they were there for me and cared about me. I miss that small town niceness and the familiar faces. I was meant to be a small town girl. I miss my girls.

15. It is not good for me to be alone. I'm not one of those nervous nellies that hears noises and gets scared. But, if I'm alone I don't eat well, I don't get dressed, I don't do anything except sit. I need the motivation of caring for someone else to keep me functioning.

Sooooo... as you can see... there are still a lot of variables involved once the house is a done deal. It was never my intention to be a burden on anyone. I need to make my own money and take care of my needs and contribute to whichever house I'm in. Pray that the job situation clears up for me. It's been a nice break but it's gone on too long. Somebody hire me, please!

Hope you're having a great Monday!


Estela said...

It may just be me... but with the way you grouped your statements, I was unable to clearly understand the pros and cons of each location. And of course, I am unclear of which location Austin is currenly in. Ultimately, I'd say you have to follow the income. or make the choices that have you putting out the least amount of money unnecessarily.