Well, it is done!! My office is cleared out, we ate cake and drank punch and my wonderful residents came to say good-by and some even cried!! Lots of good wishes via phone, e-mails, facebook and in person from staff and friends I have made through the years. Beautiful words by Tim and a precious little sticker from Etta (Seth and Josie’s as little 3 – year old). Hugs and tears and laughter and still doesn’t seem real! Followed it up with a stop at Sherry’s pub in Milford for dinner and drinks then ended the evening at Huskerville watching the Cubbies NOT win and singing a couple of songs with Rick. STILL DOESN’T SEEM REAL! but it is.
This day started like a hundred others, with Will and I going to Amanda’s to grab her and the 2 little ones to take them to school and work– only usually I do the transporting and Will just stops for a “howdy-hi” before heading out to work himself, but today, Will took the kids to school so Amanda and I could go to my house and empty my car of it’s second load of Sunrise treasures, before heading to town for a hair appointment and a quick trip to WalMart (which is a trick in itself — the quick part I mean!!), before heading to Sunrise and the party!
Just got into work, touched base with staff to see how our day was going, and then a cute little girl from the paper came to interview me, take some pictures and then it was PARTY TIME!! Now staff at Sunrise know how to throw a party and today was absolutely no exception– 5 cakes, cheese and meat trays, chips and dips, punch, coffee and even little bottles of water. I was blessed with several beautiful, beautiful bouquets that the girls had placed at the table as center pieces. There was a big poster full of pictures from lots of our experiences through the years and tons of memories revisited —and gifts– wonderful thoughtful gifts.
In addition to my staff and residents, there were special visits from great people who I have been so very fortunate to meet and share adventures with throughout the years– AND then a visit from a beautiful lady who was my DON in 1975 at Hillcrest Nursing Home in McCook. Could have knocked me over with a feather!!
The day was so full of activity and fun and friends and food and drink that I was able to just enjoy and not actually think or feel but mostly just react so haven’t taken the time to think or feel. That I am sure will happen today, so am planning a solitary trip to one of my favorite thinking places– the Safari. Love just watching the animals and thinking– weird, I know but wonderful!! I would envision my next few blogs will be a partial result of this trip, because I want to closely examine my thoughts and feelings and then I hope to share them with some clarity– right now everything seems rather jumbled!
When I started, one of the points of writing this blog was to share my feelings as I traveled through this month and in true Charliss fashion, didn’t give much thought to what to do with it afterwards. Now I realize that this life change is going to take more than a month to complete — because it is so much more than choosing a day and cleaning out drawers but it is a trip — at least for me. So I plan to continue writing — at least for a while. Lots of thoughts and feelings to explore and put into perspective and enjoy!! I hope those of you who are kind enough (and perhaps silly enough) to continue to follow this will experience with me how very complex the separation of work and daily life is, because for so many years, work WAS my daily life and it what a wonderful life it was!!