It's a big change moving from your own home into a retirement center. You've left an old life behind, but you've gained an opportunity to build a new and different life. Don't let your time in the nursing home pass you by. Be proactive, get involved, and make this time yet another important stage of your life. Here are some ideas for activities you can do to make this time in retirement special for yourself and others.
Teach What You Know to Others
Do you have a special hobby or skill that you can pass on to others? Set up demonstration sessions for crocheting, needlepoint, origami, model ship building, and any number of other interesting hobbies that others may want to take up. Tell people how you first got started with your hobby and what your initial efforts were like. You'll draw people who are really interested in the topic as well as those who enjoy hearing your story.
Help Others With Their Transition
Ask the nursing home to allow you to organize a welcoming committee for new residents. You can help them settle in and learn about what the center has to offer them. You can also help people find their own way of transitioning from their previous life to nursing home living by listening to their fears and concerns and making suggestions.
Find Ways to Work With Children
Perhaps you were a teacher or day care worker, or you just really like being with children. Offer to hold a reading time in the center for children. People who come to visit their family in the nursing home can drop off their children for your reading hour. If you are an engaging storyteller, your reputation will spread and families surrounding the facility may stop in with their children.
Help Improve the Facility
If you have skills such as landscaping or carpentry, offer to help the nursing home with improvement projects. Plant and maintain a garden in a courtyard. Build some bookshelves for the recreation room. Use your skills to make the facility a nicer place in which to live for yourself and the other residents.
Get People Talking
If you're good at facilitation, offer to hold space and time for residents to have a discussion about everything and anything on their minds. Being in a nursing home can be an isolating experience for some people. Such a discussion group will give people the chance to express their opinions and let others know what concerns them about events locally and around the world.
Your time in the nursing home can be an enriching experience. The more you get involved with the facility and residents, the more enjoyment you'll get from your time there. For more information, contact a business such as Beth Sholom Home Of Virginia.