When someone you love moves into an assisted living community, they may experience a time of transition. While everyone under the Bethesda Senior Living Communities umbrella works to make transitions enjoyable and positive, you can't change the fact that someone is moving from their home and into a new environment. They might have times where they feel lonely, afraid or unsure what to do.
Here are a few ways friends, family members and even existing assisted living community residents can show Christ's love to these seniors to make this transition easier and more pleasant.
One of the kindest things friends and family can do is ensure the senior knows they are still connected to various support networks. If you're local, take time to stop by regularly for a visit. You might stop once a week to dine with the senior in their new community or plan a monthly outing or get-together with grandkids or others. Family and friends that aren't local can stay in touch via phone. Call regularly to check in, especially as your loved ones integrates into their new home.
Send small tokens of your love through the mail to help remind seniors that you're thinking of them. Popular items for care packages include unscented lotions (or your loved one's favorite light scent), socks and slippers, photos, supplies for a hobby or small food and beverage treats. If you're nearby, consider delivering the items in person to make the gesture even sweeter.
The internet makes it possible to share photos easily, so you can send seniors in your life snapshots of the family or events daily if you like. Set your loved one up with an email or a smartphone, and strive for a regular schedule to send photos. You might send a single snapshot that captures a fun moment daily or arrange a weekly drop time to send all the images you captured that day. Your loved one can enjoy their breakfast on a Saturday morning while perusing your photos, for example.
If you're a senior in an assisted living community, make it a point to invite new residents to join you. They may not know anyone within the community, so they might be unsure how to join in or reticent to sit with new people in the dining areas.
Whether you're a friend, family member or a fellow assisted living resident, increase the chance that someone will try new activities in the community by offering to do things with them. It's easier to join in on a new card game or attend the ice cream social when you have a wing man or woman along for the ride.