Dotty and Mary Jean’s Elevator Encounter Makes Them Inseparable
Dotty and Mary Jean are a little bit of mischief intertwined with a whole lot of fun!
These two extraordinary women were born many miles apart, but they were brought together by momentous life changes. They are a testament to the transformational power of friendship.
In 2014, Dotty and Mary Jean met here at Cambridge House. They moved in within a month of each other, but it wasn’t until a year later that they finally met each other at the elevator. Three times a day, one of them was already in the elevator and the other was waiting for the elevator to open, so she could get on, too. Soon, they joked about being elevator friends. Those daily meetings brought the ladies closer together, and now, they are inseparable friends. Sometimes, people call them “Bopsy Twins” or “Double Trouble”.
Mary Jean likes to tell us she corrupted Dotty, while Dotty has taught Mary Jean to have fun playing all the card games. They like to play poker, bingo and go on our fishing outings. Mary Jean says she is so busy these days that her daughter has to make an appointment just to see her.
They both keep each other on their toes, and although they were both shy by nature, their friendship has blossomed. They have opened up to share their neighborly love and friendship throughout Cambridge House.
Because of their chance encounter on the elevator, Dotty and Mary Jean encourage everyone to: “Get out of your apartment. Meet your neighbors and do all that you can do. You will be a lot happier and healthier participating and enjoying other people.”
Compassionate Staff Puts Joe, Dorothy and Their Family at Ease
A decade ago when Joe and Dorothy moved into an independent living community for seniors, they knew it was the perfect place for them.
“My wife and I were private people. We had a small network of friends and liked to keep to ourselves in our apartment,” Joe said.
They lived in that apartment for eight years, and during the last couple years, they had some health challenges.
After Dorothy had a few falls, the couple discussed health and safety concerns with their children and decided it was time to move.
“We didn’t have staff or neighbors who would be around to make sure we were safe like we do now, and that was important to us and our family,” Joe said.
Dorothy has not fallen since they moved to Cambridge House, and Joe’s health has improved. He says he is thankful for the staff, and the way they genuinely care about their well-being.
They appreciate having an active lifestyle that includes organized outings, entertainment and games.
“My wife and I take trips almost daily to visit family, go out to eat or go to the store,” Joe said.
Here at Cambridge House, Joe stays busy. He is the captain our Cambridge House Wii Bowling team, competing against seniors from other assisted living communities. He also led his team – Guys and Gals – to a victory against a group of local middle school students.
After three years at Cambridge House of O’Fallon, Joe says, he knows there is no place else they’d rather call home.
Karen’s Story: Carefree Lifestyle Allows Her to Focus on What Matters
Karen came to us last year after her family spoke to her about their concerns over her living alone.
“What if she got sick? What if she fell?” they asked.
At the time, Karen was living in a duplex with her pets. And although her family and friends would come visit, it was not every day.
Because she no longer drove, she had to ask her family to take her to the doctor or go shopping.
Karen knew she didn’t want to impose on her children and grandchildren. Instead, she decided to move to Cambridge House of O’Fallon.
Our community is close to her family, but Karen says she feels even more independent than before.
“Cambridge House will help get me to my doctor appointments and take me shopping,” she said. “I can go on group outings, and there are so many activities going on here to participate in. I go to the exercise class and Tai Chi.”
The best part, Karen says, “is I don’t have to cook or clean, leaving time to do all the crafting I want.”
When you walk into the lobby, you might see Karen sitting with her friends, working on a crochet or plastic canvas project.
“There is always someone nearby, if I need help,” Karen said, “and there are ways that I can help others.”
Karen has volunteered to teach a class to help other residents learn how to crochet or help them sharpen old skills. She has made table numbers for the dining room, and she offers assistance to other residents during our craft class.
Just more than a year after moving in, Karen tells us that moving to Cambridge House was the best thing for me.”