Purging The Parent; When Should You Start

I went home last week to take care of my mom after she had surgery. I hadn’t been home in several years since we usually meet at my sisters for holidays. As I started on my two days of cooking/ freezing food, I was having trouble finding things in an over full kitchen. Every cabinet and drawer was full. It was really hard for me to take off my organizers hat and just be a daughter.

So I thought about it. When should you purge your parents home? Do you wait till they pass when you are in the grief process? Do you do it each time you visit? What is the right answer? There is none.

I had the time. I was ready to jump in and just do it. We have a goodwill and salvation army in town. My parents own a van. I had a friend to help.

On the flip side, I could tell that my mom had no interest. I asked her if there were any cabinets she wanted me to clean out. She said no. She did want to get rid of a drawer full of make up bags. I ended up taking one of them and giving them to a friends mother. She also wanted me to take my baby blankets. When I told her that I was comfortable giving them up for donation, she put them back in the cabinet. I also took a silver purse from the 60’s that I have been in love with since I was a child.

I looked in vain for my grandma’s set of classic books. My dad can’t remember if he tossed them or put them in the attic. Tears came to my eyes. I have always wanted them. I am hoping they are in the attic. I will tackle that on the next visit.

Sometimes you just have to be a daughter and listen to your mom.

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