Pictured: ECH resident M.L. Gorman lives well into the future by tending to her garden.
It can feel like our purpose is tied to what we spend most of our time doing for many people. Whether that’s a career, homemaking, volunteerism, or something else entirely, it can be easy to feel like our purpose is lost when we reach retirement. That doesn’t have to be the case, though, and many residents here at the Episcopal Church Home (ECH) in Louisville, KY, are living purposefully and staying engaged during their retirement.
Staying active — both mentally and physically — is vital to living well into the future, and that’s something we’re advocates of here at ECH. We’d like to introduce you to some of the residents of our retirement community so you can get to know them and their stories of purposeful living.
Jim has been a key player in helping new residents transition to our retirement community — particularly our independent living neighborhoods. When he knew some friends of his were going to be moving into Dudley Square, he wrote a booklet of advice and information to give to them. That little booklet has now grown into a 35-page book that helps residents feel at home here. Jim has also been part of a team that put together an email group to keep everyone connected, which has become so important in recent months.
Judith has been a resident here for almost nine years, and she’s been keeping quite active — especially throughout 2020 and 2021. She loves to do games and puzzles and create art while she’s in her room. Last year, she started a letter-writing project. Each day throughout the season of Lent, she wrote a card to someone who had an impact on her life so she could thank them.
Next, we’d like to introduce you to Carol Meade. Carol and her husband Don are residents here, and they’ve been keeping busy to live well into the future, too. Recently, Carol was part of a group study with Chaplain Lisa at the Episcopal Church Home. It was a two-month study, and Carol assisted in leading discussions on Friday mornings. She greatly enjoyed having something new and challenging to focus on and do to keep busy.
Now, Gordon has plenty to do to keep both his mind and his body active. He regularly does home workouts, which include using the elliptical, walking around the community, and working on strength and balance routines regularly. But he’s not just working out physically. He also prioritizes strengthening his brain. He reads three newspapers each day and is often competing in family card games like gin rummy and cribbage.
Like many people, M.L. Gorman (pictured above) has found time in retirement to do things that she truly loves to do. She’s been able to spend time in her garden growing flowers in the summer and reading all of the books she’s always wanted to read. By focusing on the things she enjoys doing and putting her efforts there, she can live well into the future.
No matter your purpose or passion, there are so many ways to live positively, especially once you reach retirement. Not only will you have more time to do what you enjoy, but you’ll also have more clarity on what it is you want to do. And you can always try out new hobbies, volunteer projects, or activities to see what strikes your fancy. When you choose a retirement community, you’re choosing to have more freedom to spend your time doing things you love.