Certain Things become More Important as You Get Older

Digitizing history: The final act of throwing out her baby book was painful for Lois but the process of digitizing her baby photographs and snippets of writings in her mother’s hand was particularly meaningful. Lois recognizes “if she doesn’t go through her belongings now so her family can enjoy them, they might be packed up and put in boxes until her children retire and have time to look through them.”

Lois moved to Blacksburg five years ago. She and her husband lived in a house in Minnesota for 31 years before moving into an apartment when her husband needed access to one level living, a garage on- site, and the convenience of an elevator. After her husband passed, Lois researched numerous independent 55+ housing options in Blacksburg looking for something similar to what she left behind in Minnesota.

Retiring to Blacksburg to be close to her daughter and grandchildren made sense. Blacksburg was appealing in so many ways. Yet, “certain things become more important as you get older.” Retirees looking to downsize into apartments need many ADA requirements, such as wide hallways, doors that open outward, and proximity to public transportation. Many are looking for on-site facilities that contribute to maintaining active lifestyles and social interaction as they age in place.

Lois spends time thinking about what the next ten years will bring and how she is preparing for different outcomes as she ages. She has many friends who have suffered health and memory challenges and Lois understands the importance of thinking about next steps. Her apartment in Hethwood off of Price’s Fork Road filled some of the qualifications but others were met by Lois’ commitment to becoming actively engaged in the community--joining Blacksburg Newcomers, Virginia Tech Women’s Club, a Quilting Club, and the Blacksburg Lutheran Church.

However, Lois is still surprised by the lack of senior housing opportunities in Blacksburg and the ways affordable housing is becoming more and more difficult to find. Given the emerging trend of seniors looking to relocate, Blacksburg is a prime location for this market, with a college community, arts center, and outdoor recreation. And, Lois thinks about this a lot.

Not only the future, but the past. Lois prints out twenty years-worth of correspondence to her pen pal in Kenya and binds it in a journal. A piece of history that will give her family insight not only into a 20 year cross-cultural friendship, but also a personal view of the different stages of their mom’s life and her imprint on her community.

Share Certain Things become More Important as You Get Older on Facebook Share Certain Things become More Important as You Get Older on Twitter Share Certain Things become More Important as You Get Older on Linkedin Email Certain Things become More Important as You Get Older link