Wit and Wisdom Blog for Atria Senior Living

      Wit and Wisdom      

a new view on growing older

Stories Connect People


Posted on December 5, 2017 by Atria Senior Living


From the time humans first roamed the earth, we have used storytelling as a way to understand our experiences, build connections and make sense of the world.

We live in a time when information is plentiful, but cheap. Wisdom, on the other hand, has become all the more rare and valuable. Our purest, most relatable source of wisdom is our stories.

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Navigating the Highs and Lows of the Holiday Season


Posted on November 9, 2017 by Jamie Floyd


For caregivers, the approaching holiday season can bring with it a flurry of emotions – not all of them positive. If you are one of the 39 million caregivers in the United States, here are some tips to help you cope with the emotional ups and downs of the season.

Know that you are not alone

As a caregiver of an older person, you may experience a great feeling of loneliness that comes from being isolated from others due to the responsibilities of caregiving. It can seem as if no one understands your role as a caregiver and you are alone in the role with all of the daily responsibilities. It is very “real” to feel alone, especially around Christmas. Know that this feeling is valid. It helps to reach out to someone who is in a similar situation. They are likely to be feeling lonely, too. Talk on the phone, text or email each other daily. Make a pact to shore each other up through the holiday season. Be sure to connect with someone other than the person for whom you are caring.

Acknowledge anger – and let it go

Long lines at the mall, no parking spaces and too many items on the to-do list can bring out anyone’s inner Scrooge. Hey, we all can get angry during the holidays, right? Bah humbug! As a caregiver, your anger may be related to grief and loss. Your roles have changed, your responsibilities have grown when they were supposed to diminish and your burden is heavier. In the meantime, the whole world around you seems merry. If you feel anger, use it as fuel to take action. Call a friend and talk about it. Say it out loud, “I am angry right now because I cannot decorate this house. I don’t have time.” Identifying the feeling and taking control of the situation can help curb the anger. I know a woman who cleans closets and drawers to help blow off steam. Some folks go for long walks or bike rides. Take care of the anger in a positive and healthy way, starting with acknowledging it and getting it out.

Seek out social interaction

One in four people may experience depression during the holiday season. The top factor contributing to this is social isolation. Because of the demands of caregiving, you undoubtedly experience a heightened degree of social isolation. Caregivers often report that their circle of friends has shrunk to one or two. Adult children are too busy to visit or travel home. Social and spiritual outlets are hard to access due to the demands of caregiving. Give yourself permission to be sad while making it a priority to find ways to have social interaction. Call a friend or family member and ask them to visit. If you are invited to dinner or an event and are able to attend, then go. Many caregivers fall into the trap of declining invitations to the point of not being invited in the future. You will be giving yourself and the person in your care a gift by finding social outlets to help you stay mentally healthy.

Embrace new traditions

With caregiving come many changes. If you are an older adult caregiver, the additional changes in life roles, traditions and abilities may add to feelings of grief and loss. Acknowledge those feelings while looking for opportunities to change your roles and establish new traditions. If you feel up to baking all the pies like every Thanksgiving before, don’t let anyone take away that joy. I know of one family who realized how overwhelming big crowds of boisterous children had become for their aging parents. So, they divided up the visits over the course of a week and actually had more quality time together. Give yourself permission to create new traditions. Remember, all traditions were new at one time or another!

As a caregiver, there may come a time when full-time caregiving is no longer the solution for you or the one in your care. Give yourself permission to consider additional options for care.


Category: Caregiver Support Tags: , ,

A Long Life. A Strong Spirit. - Atria Springdale

A Long Life. A Strong Spirit.


Posted on October 29, 2014 by Beatrice Huston


Atria Springdale resident Jo P. was kind enough to open up to me about her life. I can easily describe Jo as “determined.”  She has been through a lot in her 81 years and although she’s lost two children and two husbands, she’s steadfast in her goal to be positive and optimistic.  I have come to understand that Jo is the kind of person who is determined to push through the storm and come out stronger on the other side.

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Active seniors, group of old friends playing cards at park

Guide to Comparing Independent Living Communities


Posted on March 19, 2014 by Katy Miller


There are many reasons that lead older adults to consider independent living options. Keeping up with the daily chores of running a household can become overwhelming and expensive. As grown children move out, a large house with multiple levels presents challenges for a long-term living environment. Everyday tasks that used to take no time at all now suddenly take half the day.

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Retired Senior Woman Sitting On Sofa At Home Using Tablet Computer

What Senior Living Communities Will Look Like in 10 Years


Posted on February 28, 2014 by Katy Miller


Like most other industries, the trends among senior living communities are rapidly evolving. The future is bright for prospective retirees. Senior living communities will continue to fully embrace holistic wellness, eco-friendly solutions, technology and independence. As baby boomers slide into retirement age, the senior housing industry must accommodate a generation of retirees who are active and tech-savvy in an unprecedented way. In addition, people are living longer and want to approach the work and play of retirement in a whole new way. (more…)


Category: News In Aging Tags: , ,

Grandfather and Grandson

Senior Living Communities and Staying Connected


Posted on February 6, 2014 by Katy Miller


When an older adult is considering moving into a senior living community, we often hear that they are worried about giving up their independence. Understandably, they want the same amenities, freedom and access to technology they’ve always had. With this also comes the desire for a continued deep connection with their family. (more…)


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