Stealth Move from Redmond Washington Part 1: The Plan Sounded So Good!

(All the names have been changed to protect the family’s privacy)

Click here for Mission: Impossible theme music

Your mission, should you choose to accept it….

What do you do when your mother has dementia, isn’t safe to be left alone, and absolutely refuses to move?  Your dad has been taking care of her, but he is now experiencing his own health problems.

Her dad, George, and her mom, Alison, just couldn’t be left to fend for themselves at home anymore.

That’s what Cindy was faced with.  And to make matters worse, both she and her brother, Rick, lived out of state.

After much discussion between Cindy, Rick, and their dad, they decided the best choice was for the couple to move to assisted living.  However, the move needed to be started and completed without Alison realizing what was happening.  With the complication of George’s health issues, Cindy and Rick were seemingly faced with a Mission: Impossible!  So, Cindy called on Moving Forward to plan out a stealth move from Redmond, Washington.

“Meet my friend from College….”

The first hurdle was figuring out how Moving Forward could estimate the size of the move without Alison realizing why they were in her home. We sure couldn’t just walk in the front door with an estimate form in hand.    Could George take Alison out for a drive?  Well, no.  Alison rarely leaves her bed, let alone the house.

Well, how about if Donna, a Moving Forward employee, visits the couple’s home as “Cindy’s old college friend”?

“My, what a lovely collection of figurines you have!  May I take a closer look?  Oh, let’s see what nice dishes you have in your kitchen.  Great linen closet!”   Donna felt a little silly, but Alison was delighted to show off her collections.

After Donna had visited, Cindy asked her, “Could you complete the whole move in a single day?”

“Sure!  We’d start packing really early in the morning –“

“Oh dear.  You can’t start early.  Mom can’t see you packing.  She’ll freak out.  We have to get her out of the house first.  And they don’t even get up until 10:00 am.”

“Oh.  How about George and Alison stay at ABC Retirement in the guest room overnight?  We’ll pack in the afternoon and move the next day.”

This sounded like the best option, until we learned that ABC Retirement doesn’t allow movers on the elevators during the lunch rush.  If the movers started working at their usual morning time, lunch is just about when they would arrive at ABC to unload.   So, that wasn’t going to work.

What if the movers waited until after lunch?  Then there wouldn’t be enough time to unpack and set up the new apartment.   George might be able to get Alison to stay in the guest room for one night, but two nights was asking for trouble.

But darn it –we had to find a way to make this work.  Finally, we developed a feasible plan.  It was designed to the detail and timed to the minute, just like Mission Impossible — Dunh-dunh!  Dun-dun-dunh-dunh!

The plan…….

At 11:30am on Tuesday, George would drive Alison to the retirement community while Cindy and two Moving Forward employees  hunkered down in vehicles up the street from the home.  As soon as George turned the corner, they would descend on the house and burst into a frenzy of packing!

The movers would start loading the next morning at the crack of dawn, with three men to speed through the entire move before the 11:15 elevator blackout period.

Moving Forward and Cindy would join forces to unpack, position knick-knacks, get rid of the boxes and hang the pictures.  The goal was to be finished, absolutely and completely finished, by 5pm on Wednesday.  Less than 48 hours from start to finish.

The plan sounded so good! We were going to nail that stealth move from Redmond, Washington!

Find out what really happened next week in “Stealth Move from Redmond Washington Part 2: The Best Laid Plans,”

Stealth Move from Redmond, Washington

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