For retired adults choosing to continue their lives from the comfort of home, they deserve access to the best services from people who are willing to stand by their work and provide the best in care. Those who have cared for so many others deserve focused care from service providers interested in serving their needs. That is the given, and first focus CCRH is rolling out fully in Mecklenburg County. More importantly though, in a world more connected than ever, our retired adults deserve genuine community and activity among their peers.
When I'm spending time with the people I love, those whose lives are a positive impact on my own, I smile and laugh more, feel more at ease with the regular goings on of life, and have a generally better outlook on my day. My wife and kids, parents, siblings, and friends are those people for me. Those people are my community, and we create that experience for each other just by being ourselves with each other and valuing each other for who we are. When I've spent time away from those people who give life to my life, I naturally yearn for time with them. It is certainly natural to move in and out of circles of community, but my mind, my soul, misses that life giving fellowship I was made to participate in when it is not there. When it returns, the proverbial sun returns to my day and the birds chirp again.
We are intended to live in fellowship with each other, and through so much of our lives we are placed in that situation as a part of daily life. Children attend school with their peers, adults go to work with coworkers, and many find fellowship in their place of worship, favorite restaurant or bar, and in a simple trip to the neighborhood store. Fellowship with others feeds a part of our brains that effects how we feel - having quantity of positive relationships creates positive feelings and helps keep our brains stronger and healthier than the opposite.
In Sarah McKay's article, Why Friendship is Great for Your Brain a Neuroscientist Explains, she reminds us that:
"A healthy social life naturally involves thinking, feeling, sensing, reasoning and intuition. These mentally stimulating activities build up our reserve of healthy brain cells, and promote the formation of new connections, or synapses, between neurons."
Healthy relationship and fellowship make our brain healthier. I'm sure many can relate, but when my brain is missing that feeling it tells me. I may become grumpy, easily frustrated, more tired than normal, withdrawn, and the list goes on. My brain is telling me that something is wrong and something is missing. Our brains want to be healthy and are telling us to keep stimulating it to continue building up those healthy brain cells.
Retired adults, those over the age of 65, make up roughly 12% of our population in this country. That is a lot of people! For some, regular fellowship and relationship is a part of the daily routine. It comes easy, fitting into the 'every day' of life, and that is a wonderful thing. Unfortunately that is not the case for all of us, and for others it just doesn't come as naturally. Life changes, geography, conflicting schedules, and 'all of the stuff' can really get in the way. Understandably that is one of the selling points that move away from home communities like Continuing Care Retirement Communities share with potential residents. For some that is a great solution, and we understand why that could be a great solution. For many more the home they have to leave behind, the overwhelming cost, the stigma of a retirement home, and many other reasons are more than enough to find a different solution.
CCRH® is that solution to serve Retired Adults and Seniors in the communities they choose to live, and provide both Community and Care options to our Residents. Our Community page is currently 'Under Construction' while we plan a way to deliver COVID protocol aware activities to our 'Residents'. We look forward to delivering opportunities to gather at local restaurants, movie theaters, trips to local destinations, and so much more, and we welcome all suggestions and feedback. Please offer any and all suggestions in the blog below or feel free to visit our comments page by clicking here.