A trip to the southern east side of the U.S. was our vacation destination this year. Roomy and I have talked about moving south when we retired since we first married 32 years ago. We visited South Padre Island for 4 winters and loved the Texas island life. We toyed with living there. We visited Arizona a few times and talked longingly of living there. Weather in both locations would suit us just fine year 'round, but the draw back was and remains, it is too far from where our families are. As we age our priorities have shifted to being able to return "home" in a day if an emergency were to come up. The flight would need to be affordable and reasonably convenient. Neither of those locations offer that.
That is how we came to look at and discuss Florida, Georgia and South Carolina. The trip was intended to take us through the areas of those states where we were attracted either by computer searches or recommendations by friends.
We planned nearly 3 weeks of searching. At the end of week one, a phone call notified us that Momma was going to the emergency room. She was released a few hours later and my sister had it totally under control. I talked with Momma and felt okay about staying. She seemed tired but not afraid or upset. We continued to travel, check areas of interest and visit my brother and SIL briefly. It was fun. It was relaxing. We were eager to feel "at home" somewhere as we drove and gawked. That happened almost immediately as we drove slowly through an area on the northeastern coast of Florida. (Ormond Beach, Holly Hill area.) This was our destination. We both knew it wasn't going to be better than this anywhere.
After visiting friends in St. Augustine, we continued to look around that area and around Savannah, GA. We loved our time in Savannah, but quickly determined it wasn't a place we would want to live. The towns around the city were very disappointing and to be honest, I was still thinking about what Momma was doing much more than I should have been. I can't say it detracted from our search because I felt the search was over, but we agreed to head home by way of Nashville. One day and the night with my daughter's family and then get home. It felt like time.
Turmoil. A three week vacation to scout future home sites ends in less than two full weeks because the search was over and I needed to put eyes on Momma. I knew she was physically all right, but I heard something in her conversations that was unsettling to me. Confusion, maybe depression, irritability all ringing inside my head while I tried to be excited about our future. A future which always included Momma.
The plan is to buy a house with an in-law apartment or a duplex. It was never a consideration that she wouldn't come. She had been quite happy discussing this with me just a few days before we left. Now she had no idea why I thought she would move. She wasn't moving anywhere. Totally unaware of the previous conversations. That locked in stubbornness has taken over and I'm once again in turmoil over my own life and plans.
How do you justify giving up your life plans with your husband because your mom doesn't want to leave a state where the winter makes her miserable for a year round weather in which she can sit or walk outside nearly every day? Turmoil. Going back and forth with plans inside my head. We could move and come back once a month for a couple days. Very difficult January through March, but otherwise, doable. I can just keep talking and hope she will get on board at some point again. I can just stay here until she's gone or I don't feel compelled to stay. Turmoil inside of my head and my heart. The biggest turmoil, do I just give up our wants for her wants?
We will go to our Florida home, if we live long enough, or if she softens up.
Yep, turmoil which I'm praying about.