Her senior year of high school, Rosalyn was elected homecoming queen and head cheerleader. She attended college and spent a semester in Paris. After earning her degree, Rosalyn taught hundreds of first graders how to read and subtract until she retired 25 years ago and spent time traveling cross-country.
Today, issues related to aging have limited Rosalyn’s ability to travel and live alone. Yet if you were to ask her what her favorite time of life is, she would answer, “Now.” Here’s why:
Morning in an Assisted Living Community
Instead of waking up to a blaring alarm, Rosalyn stays bundled under her covers as the sun coaxes her eyes open.
Once alert, she brews a cup of coffee in her kitchenette while watching the local news. After the weather, she showers. Rosalyn used to worry about slipping while bathing, but her new shower is equipped with a bench, bars to hold and a call button in case of an emergency.
Clean and dressed, Rosalyn walks the short distance to the dining room, where a freshly made omelet and orange juice are waiting – egg whites only and no bacon, following her doctor’s dietary recommendations.
Rosalyn feels like taking in the bright sun, so she enjoys some time outside reading this week’s mystery selection from the library.
At 10:30, she decides to visit the on-site salon for a shampoo and manicure. While getting her nails done, Rosalyn converses with her stylist and two other residents.
Since the activity room is across the hall from the salon, Rosalyn decides to stop in after she leaves. A local musician is playing classic jazz tunes on the piano, while several residents clap and sing along. A staff member passes out warm sugar cookies for residents to enjoy during the performance. “After all,” he says, “eat dessert first.”
Afternoon in an Assisted Living Community
Once the performance is complete, Rosalyn and a few other residents head to lunch. She eats a flatbread pizza with plenty of cheese.
Before leaving the dining room, she places her order for tomorrow: a turkey club sandwich and a bowl of tomato soup. There is no doubt it will be just as delicious as today’s choice.
After lunch, several residents board the community’s bus for a trip to the local farmers market. With residents’ help, the dining director purchases fresh tomatoes, green beans and fruit. Rosalyn uses an old technique her grandmother taught her to select a perfectly ripe watermelon.
Once they return to the assisted living community, Rosalyn heads to her apartment for a quick nap. While she was gone, community staff vacuumed, mopped, made the bed and cleaned the bathroom.
Before dinner, Rosalyn plays cards with her visiting family in the main visiting area. The staff stop in to see who is winning and help the family to cups of cappuccino.
Evening at an Assisted Living Community
Dinner is roast pork with a baked potato, corn and fresh green beans. During dinner, Rosalyn talks with June, a new resident who shares her love of mysteries. Dinner is topped off with cherry cheesecake and a fresh watermelon slice. Her grandmother’s trick worked – the fruit is perfectly ripened.
Once dinner is over, the community’s activity director hosts a painting workshop. Residents try their hand at creating a still life. Rosalyn’s flowers barely resemble roses, but she puts the canvas on top of her desk anyway, excited to show her daughter.
At the end of the evening, she selects a comfortable chair in one of the community’s sitting areas and returns to her mystery novel. She can hear a group of residents, who are gathered in the common area, laughing at a new comedy movie. Soon, the book’s plot blocks out all noise, and she becomes focused on solving the case.
Once her mystery is solved, she snaps the cover closed with a brief yawn. She’s getting to bed a little later than usual tonight, but she will sleep in tomorrow. Leaving the book on an end table so it can be returned to a library shelf, Rosalyn heads back to her apartment.
With the covers up to her chin and her eyes sliding closed, Rosalyn thinks over one final decision: Which book will she begin tomorrow?
Doesn’t life with no housework, grounds keeping or other chores sound nice? If Rosalyn’s schedule seems too busy for you, worry not. Your schedule is yours to create. Need help deciding what your goals should be once you don’t have to worry about taking care of a house? We’ll be happy to help.