Making a Move: Is It Right for Me?
Moving to a senior living community is a great decision you’ll come to love.
What do we Gardens residents have in common?
That might seem like an odd question, considering that we’ve come here from diverse backgrounds and all over the country. But I suggest we have a lot in common.
Each of us chose the Gardens at Ocotillo and its lifestyle because we felt it was time to simplify our lives. Like many of you, I had a home that required looking after … yard care, maintenance, cleaning … you name it. And if you were without a mate, as I was, there’s the issue of food preparation. There’s a limit on how many things you can do with peanut butter, crackers, bread, and canned soup.
But a lot of us like being in a place with facilities and staff that can meet our needs as we age without having to go through another major change. No matter how much family or hired help you had for this move, I’ll bet it was a big adjustment that you don’t want to repeat.
We had a big advantage in that we could see the Mountain Park community and visit people who already had some experience with Spectrum, whether as residents or staff. In other words, we could see that the company “knows what it’s doing.”
But perhaps the greatest benefit of the Gardens is that we can meet new people who have a wide variety of backgrounds. We can add to our list of friends and simplify our lives just by “doing what comes naturally” here at the Gardens.
Your Gardens at Ocotillo neighbor
We all know life changes as we age, and many of these will be positive advances — for instance, the opportunity to move into a new home better suited to your needs. Moving into a senior living community can be one of the best decisions you ever make. Following are some thoughts on how to know if the time is right, what improvements you can expect, and how to make the best of it.
KNOWING WHEN IT’S TIME TO MOVE
While maintaining a high level of independence, you’ll find it’s a nice change to have someone tend to your needs around the clock. Here are some thoughts on how to know when the time is right for you:
1. It’s time to simplify your life.
You deserve a break from the work and upkeep of homeownership. Don’t worry about leaving behind wonderful memories. You and your loved ones hold those memories and can continue to share them no matter where you hang your hat.
2. You’re eager for an active social life.
It’s nice to have peers with whom to socialize. When you share your memories and experiences from your childhood, someone is likely to share a similar experience. Senior living communities offer a variety of group activities to help you make new friends.
3. You want to get out of the house more often.
Get out and be active to feel young and stay happy. Senior living communities often offer transportation so you can shop, go to the movies, or attend a ball game.
4. You love high-quality meals prepared for you.
You’ll be happy to turn over daily meal prep and planning to someone else. In a senior living setting, you can plan on having healthy meals — all made by someone else. All you have to do is enjoy them!
5. You want easy access to physical therapy and medical assistance.
Many senior living communities offer on-site physical therapy as well as highly trained staff to assist with medical needs. This offers the peace of mind you need.
If any — or all — of these notions resonate with you, it’s time to make the move. Enjoy a healthy lifestyle with great food, friendly neighbors, and activities to keep you moving and feeling youthful. No more worrying about the bills, taking out the trash, painting the trim, or mowing the lawn. You can, however, continue the activities you love, such as gardening, playing games, going to the theater, and more.
MAKING THE BEST OF YOUR BIG MOVE
You may wonder what life will be like in your new home. Here are a few ways to make your transition a smooth one:
1. Get to know your community before you go.
Learn about the services offered, what amenities are included, and what local attractions are nearby. Visit the community ahead of time, and participate in an event or class. It will give you a chance to make new friends — when you move, you’ll have friendly faces waiting for you.
2. Make your new space feel like home.
Pack your favorite family photos, books, a favorite heirloom, and your comfy armchair. Enlist a family member to help decorate. With your treasured possessions nearby, you will adjust to your new surroundings in no time.
3. Get out into the community.
Sign up for activities. Mingle in the common areas. Introduce yourself to neighbors. Sign up for a class such as painting or dancing, join a knitting group, or engage in one of the many volunteer opportunities available.
By Heather Shoning