Maintaining a home is not as easy as it used to be, is it? At some point even those of us who love to work around the house and in the yard grow tired of so much work – planning and preparing meals, mowing and pruning and all the other green thumb tasks, laundry (who doesn’t hate folding laundry?), house cleaning. It never ends. It takes time. It’s wearing. Household repairs cost money, sometimes big money. Wouldn’t you rather spend all that energy and money on something else?
In a senior-focused retirement community you can actually retire.
You can ditch the headaches and hassle, retain your privacy, and as much “alone time” as you want. You can also avail yourself with a multitude of activities from arts and crafts to Zen yoga classes. Every senior living community offers its own range of educational, cultural, and fitness activities along with other amenities, but the goal is usually “something for everyone.” Here at Magnolia Manor, our communities are all different, yet they all provide a wealth of opportunities to exercise your body and mind and feed your spirit.
We like to call that living the carefree life!
Getting help to remain in your home
Some seniors have the financial resources to hire out work they no longer want to do, or can do, on their own. This can be especially helpful to handle heavy-lifting tasks such as home maintenance and yard work, but it can also include physical work such as housekeeping. However, not everyone can afford professional help.
More commonly, those closest to you – family members, neighbors, friends around town – will notice over time that you could use a little help. They love you, so they may step in to help around the house with cleaning or cooking, drive you to appointments and shopping, or even assist with personal tasks such as bathing and dressing.
Hiring help because you don’t want to do something is one thing. But there’s a difference between “chores” and what are called “activities of daily living,” or ADLs. There are many that are used to evaluate an individual’s ability to care for himself or herself, but a few are:
- Bathing, toileting, and incontinence
- Personal hygiene and grooming
- Remembering to take prescribed medication, and taking it correctly
- Functional mobility
- Appropriate financial management, including paying bills on time
- Using the phone
Activities of daily living are basic requirements for living independently. Accepting personal help can be very difficult if it means admitting we cannot do everything for ourselves any more. That’s why, all too often, seniors rebuff caring overtures from friends and family. Many seniors also don’t want to overtly ask for help because they don’t want to “bother” friends or loved ones.
In truth, though, getting a little help with ADLs can help maintain your overall independence and ability to stay in your own home. Some seniors and their families turn to Meals on Wheels, private caregivers such visiting nurses or other at-home service providers to help with daily living tasks, transportation, etc.
These options can be especially helpful if just one spouse needs assistance. Couples can remain together in their home and the healthier spouse will not become increasingly over-worked. Ultimately, however, in-home assistance is only a temporary solution.
What’s so great about living independently in a “senior setting”?
With so many different options available, there are communities that fit beautifully with all types of independent seniors:
Couples - You still have each other and a zest for life. Senior independent living provides everything you love to do together (and the chance to remain together). But it also provides more opportunities to resource your individuality.
Singles - Senior independent living ensures privacy when you want alone time, but you don’t have to worry about becoming isolated, physically or emotionally. This is crucial because studies have proven that seniors who live alone are more likely to feel left out, become depressed and develop health problems, especially if they can no longer drive or have physical mobility issues. You may have well-meaning family or neighbors, but typically seniors don’t want to “impose” for transportation or togetherness.
Just one spouse - Loving couples support each other as they age. Sometimes separation becomes inevitable when one person needs more care than the other can provide. You may be able to move together into assisted living, but that’s not always possible. With the right senior living community, however, the spouse who requires additional support can move into an assisted living or memory care unit, and the other spouse can move into an independent living unit nearby. The proximity of living in the same community facilitates personal visits, and that bolsters peace of mind
Almost all Magnolia Manor communities offer multiple types of senior living to serve those with different types of needs. Six of the nine campuses include independent living housing as well as assisted living and/or memory care plus rehabilitation or skilled nursing.
Make the move before you need formalized assistance
Eventually there may come a time when you will not be able to live independently. You’ll have to transition to assisted living, or perhaps even memory care. So why not make the most of your senior years while you’re still healthy and active, mentally and physically?
Think about all those things you’ve always said you could do – would do -- when you finally retire. By downsizing to independent senior living you can stop talking and do them! Say goodbye to household drudgery (yippee) and get busy with a life that’s more fun, interesting, uplifting and richly fulfilling instead.
But that takes advance planning. Giving yourself time to find just the right living situation to extend your independence will also give you the time you need to prepare mentally. That way, the transition will be easier and you will be excited to make the move. You made the choice, and it’s a good one!