Changes can be good, bad, unexpected, inevitable. Mostly inevitable in life I think. The simple passage of time means change.
This week has brought lots of change in our lives. I have often thought when things are going badly sometimes it’s good to have a bunch of things going badly at the same time so I can’t focus on one thing.
In the past week my mother has sold our home of 35 years, finally after a couple of almost sells. The closing is quick, mid-July. So that means on the long weekend next week we will all head down and pack boxes and fill the dumpster in the backyard, and drink some wine and likely shed some tears. The house has been on the market for a few months and I was fine with it being sold. It is without a doubt the best thing for Mum. My mother is a pessimist, so the entire time I have had to encourage her and say it was all going to work out fine, and voila, it has! She is moving into a brand new, single story duplex close to where she lives now. So that part is wonderful. But leaving will be hard, and it’s hitting me in the last few days that it will be hard for me too. That surprises me to a certain extent. I haven’t lived there for a long, long time. But it’s still home to me. It’s the only place Nanny & Papa have lived for all the grandkids, and some of them have actually lived there too, so that’s emotional. But it’s only a building, I don’t only remember living there when I am actually there, so that’s my defence and I guess I am trying to convince myself that it won’t change my memories.
Also this week the powers that be decided that elementary schools in Lr. Sackville will only go to Grade 5 and middle school will be 6-8 and High school 9-12. This one is tough. Next year when Alex is in Grade 5 he will be done, and their class and the Grade 6 class will be finished at Hillside at the same time. I want Alex’s class to have the chance to be the oldest in the school, and I want them (all 21 of them) to have the chance to be in the same actual class again. Because it’s a small school and their grade is small in number, they have been in split classes for years. Next year will be Alex’s third straight split class. He has been in a ¾ split, a 4/5 split, and next year all the Grade 5 kids are in a split again. The one and only year they have all been in a class alone without any other grade was in first grade. It’s like I want them to have the chance to all be together again as a strong army going forward to Jr. High! Not going to happen. And no one else really seems to care, which makes me think I am nuts. I don’t care; I am the first to admit I don’t want Alex to grow up too fast.
Yesterday we went to visit Peggy, who was Alex’s first childcare giver besides Derek & me. Peggy is also Derek’s aunt, so she looked after him as a kid too. Any Mum out there will know how it feels to be sick with worry about going back to work and who will look after your baby. Once I set everything up with Peggy about 4 months before I went back to work I was so relieved. And she and I didn’t really know each other very well back then; I had only met her a few times before that. Seems funny to me because we are good friends now and we go and visit and Alex takes off and plays with the dog and cat and we just sit and chat for hours if we have the chance.
So we went to visit Peggy because she has sold her house, and is moving back to Sydney next week. Now granted, it has been 5 years at least since Alex went there full time, but it really is the closing of another chapter for us. We will still go visit her when we are in Sydney but the house on Denneb Cres. will belong to someone else. Alex hadn’t even celebrated his first birthday when he started there. He was just starting to walk; that’s where he learned so much – how to be someone’s friend, how to be helpful and do your part. I remember the little ones who were with him at the beginning – Maya, Maren, and then Aiden came later. They all go to different schools and never really see each other anymore. I wonder if their paths will every cross at a High School dance or something like that and if they will even remember each other. When I was leaving yesterday and was in the front porch it really hit me. For almost 10 years, on the door jam of Peggy’s porch door there are little marker lines with “Alex” written. That’s where it is recorded how he got taller each year. And he took a marker yesterday and measured himself when we weren’t even watching. It was like he was leaving his final mark there. I just wanted to go and get a crowbar and take that piece of wood and figure out how we could fix it before Peggy’s house closes next week. But the new owners will come in and paint it and maybe start measuring their own kids in the same spot.
I guess that’s what change is. Sometimes change sucks.