Last Wednesday, my younger sister and I set off for Arnolds Park, IA to help pack up my mom and stepdad and move them back to Denver, CO. You see my stepdad was diagnosed with Alzheimer's 3 years ago, and in that short amount of time, has needed considerably more help, as well as my mother in taking care of him. Packing up my stepdad's childhood home seemed a bit strange, his father built that house from the ground up, and it was something my stepdad was very familiar with despite his declining memory. This move may seem like a huge change, but in the long run will be beneficial in supporting the both of them throughout this journey. My younger sister's father flew in a few days later to help with the move and drive the U-Haul back to Denver. He was the "break master", making sure we all took at least 10 minutes to unwind from the chaos. Between packing, corralling my stepdad, walking the dog, making sure we all ate, and reminding my mother to let go of what she had held onto for so long, seemed stressful at times, and overwhelming, but at the same time it was fun and was good to be amongst it all. The task of packing up 8 rooms, a garage and a storage unit was a bit daunting and overwhelming at times. My mother has always been a collector of nostalgic things, hoping to sell them at antique malls or flea markets, but with the onset of my stepfather's illness that was hard for her to do. My mother had to let go of a lot of stuff this trip, 6 full carloads to Good Will to be exact. I am so proud of my mom for letting it all go, I know it wasn't easy. I hope by letting it go, it will free up more space in her life. My mother's neighbors in Iowa were such blessings, they stepped in at the last minute to help us load up the truck, and provided some much needed relief after 5 days of doing it on our own. They were so giving of their time, and helped in more ways than one. My mother made some great friendships while in Iowa, which were hard to leave, but they all understood the necessity of her move. Overall, the move couldn't have gone any smoother. Yes, there were a few mishaps, but in the scheme of things it went perfectly. When we pulled into Denver, Carl, Rachelle, and my stepdads son and girlfriend so graciously helped us unload once again, help arriving just when we needed it. Thank you! At first my mom felt apprehensive about being back, but when she walked into the condo they had left behind, she felt as if she was returning home. Welcome home Mom & Don! Welcome home!