Susan’s Story: Love Conquers All
Susan was the first resident to move into The Belvedere, and so much has changed since she walked through our doors.
In April, her significant other and caregiver of 20 years passed away suddenly, leaving her alone. Susan had been estranged from her family, and she was left with no one to care for her. She ended up in the hospital because of chronic obstructive pulmonary disease and a stroke that left her in a wheelchair. She had nowhere to go until a neighbor contacted Susan’s daughter, Tammy. Although they hadn’t spoken in years, Tammy went to see her mom. She knew that the hospital was no place for her to live. After talking with a social worker there, she did everything that needed to be done to make Belvedere her mother’s new home.
Fast-forward almost a year, and Susan has made a complete turnaround. With the assistance she receives with her medications and a proper meal schedule, she is getting stronger and is able to do more for herself than she has in a very long time. Susan jokes that the food is so good she has “gotten fat” since moving in.
Our community has also helped Susan connect with others. She has made new friends, and after more than two decades, she finally has a relationship with her daughters again. That reunion also gave her an opportunity to get to know her grandchildren.
When you see Susan, she is always smiling and eager to share kind words. Susan has overcome adversity to find her way home, and she has shown us that love conquers all.
Stephanie’s Story: Determined to Find Home
When Stephanie received a mailer for our community, she was immediately intrigued. That intrigue turned to excitement and a determination to learn more.
Stephanie called us right away, then walked over a mile (with her service dog, Missy, sitting on the seat of her walker) to fill out an application at the sales office.
Later, she returned during a rainstorm to give us a deposit. She wanted to make sure she and Missy would have a home.
Once she reserved her apartment, Stephanie would walk to our community a few times a week with Missy. She would pack a lunch, so she could sit and watch the crews build our community and her new home.
Stephanie suffers from a rare and incurable disease. She moved away from her family to be in a healthier environment.
The Belvedere has given her much more than a place to live; we’ve given her a sense of community and made her feel welcome in her new home.
“Before I came here, I felt that I didn’t belong in the world. Here, I feel loved,” she said. “I don’t keep in touch with my family. Now, I have family here.”
Her family includes the many friends she has made here, and of our course, her loyal service dog.
“I promised Missy that I would find us a home – some place where we could be safe and watched over,” Stephanie said, telling us that she knew she had made the right decision, but that choice was confirmed when our staff realized she had been prescribed two medications that should not be taken together. We worked with her doctors to get her medication straightened out, and now, Stephanie is thriving.
Today, she is an active member of our community. Stephanie walks through the building with a smile on her face. She no longer hast to worry about meals, medication or having a safe place to live.
Belvedere Senior Housing has provided all that and more, Stephanie says, telling us, “This is the last stop.”
The Piano Man’s Story: Music to Our Ears and Medicine for His Soul
The sound of music touches hearts and can lift a person’s spirit. Music can also make a reserved man enjoy being the center of attention.
Robert, a resident at The Belvedere, is our “Piano Man.”
When he pulls up a seat at a piano, you hear more than beautiful music. You see his soul light up!
The first question Robert had when he moved in wasn’t about how to find his way around; Robert wanted to know where he could put the piano his family donated to us.
Having a piano was all he needed to feel at home here. Music is the way Robert connects with people.
Listening to him play it would be easy to think he played all his life. Perhaps, this is the most impressive part of this/ his story.
During his time in the military and for most of his adult life, Robert was known for the music he played and the way he loved sharing his musical gift. Robert played wind instruments like the clarinet, horn and tuba, but recent changes in his health left him unable to play.
For Robert, the thought of not playing music was more difficult to accept than the sudden change in his health.
Then, he found the piano.
Robert coped with his health challenges by learning to play.
Music was his medicine.
Now, people gather around him with their toes tapping to the sound of his music. Residents don’t hurry back to their rooms; they stay to hear “The Piano Man” play.
Every day, Robert shows us that “our greatest adversity can become our greatest opportunity to shine!”
We hope he continues to find joy in playing music because we sure enjoy listening!
Russel’s Story: Discovering a New World
Russel toured our community and immediately fell in love, saying he couldn’t wait to make this his home.
He moved into The Belvedere the week we opened our doors
Seven years before he came here, Russell had a stroke. He lived at a long-term care facility and an adult foster care community.
The Belvedere has been a completely different experience for him.
We have given him stability.
He reconnected with his sister, and every Wednesday, she comes to have lunch with him and his friends.
Russel is finally a part of a community – something that he never thought was possible.
Finally, he says, he can live a life full of love and integrity.
Shirley and Avelina’s Story: The Power of Friendship
Many seniors talk about friends that they have lost or those that have come and gone throughout their lives. It isn’t often you hear about the friendships that are rekindled. The story of a rekindled friendship between two residents at Belvedere Senior Housing has restored faith in the power of having friends.
Shirley and Avelina are a great example of true friends. While living in another senior housing facility, not far from our own, these two ladies became close friends. Over the years, they discovered the many things they have in common as well as their strong love for family and faith. They talked every day, shared meals and even “adopted” each other’s family for their own. Sharing holidays, birthday parties and family functions together was the new norm. Shirley and Avelina are the best of friends.
Moving is not easy at any age, but it is especially difficult when it separates you from a close friend. Shirley and Avelina were devastated thinking that they may have to live in separate communities. Their families came together, searched for options and discovered Belvedere Senior Housing.
Our assisted lifestyle community was the perfect fit, and an answer to many prayers that keep Shirley and Avelina together.
Shirley was the first to move in. Avelina followed soon after. The day Avelina moved in Shirley was waiting with open arms and both had tears in their eyes. They embraced, sharing tears of joy. They picked up right where they left off: talking every day, sharing meals and gathering their families together for special occasions.
The lesson we have learned from watching this beautiful friendship flourish is that true friends can come into our life at any time. They have shown us the power of friendship.