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Comfort zone

Lois Schlimme takes advantage of life at Silver Spring community

Created date

April 23rd, 2013

Karen Pallota wanted her mother Lois Schlimme to enjoy her [lifestyle] instead of being bogged down by the encumbrances of life, she says. [My mother s] schedule had become more about home maintenance and repairs than living. And Karen wanted more for her mother. Karen encouraged her mother to consider moving to Riderwood, an Erickson Living community in Silver Spring, Md. Lois had always put it off because the thought of downsizing a lifetime worth of stuff was daunting. Now, she wishes she had moved sooner.

Move first, downsize later

With the help of Kimberly Schoeberlein, Riderwood s personal moving consultant, Lois was able to move to the community first and downsize later. Schoeberlein offers complimentary moving services to priority list members moving to Riderwood, from recommending a real estate agent or moving company to helping with downsizing. Lois decided to keep her original move-in date. Moving first made it easier to see that Lois had mostly everything she needed already. Of course, she made a few trips back to the house to pick up odds and ends, but Schoeberlein and Let s Move, a preferred senior move manager from Riderwood s trusted list of vendors, helped her take what she needed first and go back for things she wanted later. After following the advice of Riderwood s experts, Lois was ready to sell her house. Once on the market, it had multiple offers and was under contract in five days.

Comfort zone

Upon move-in, Lois stayed in the guest suite on campus while movers unpacked and set up her new apartment home. As soon as she walked through the doors, she says something unexpected happened the apartment instantly became home. The house wasn t my home anymore. Riderwood became my comfort zone, Lois says. How her furniture and belongings were set up fit both her style and needs. It was almost as if she had done the unpacking herself. Since Lois moved to Riderwood, her daughter feels more comfortable and confident that Mom is even more mobile than she was when living in the house. It takes a lot of effort for one to make plans and go out to dinner or the store [when living alone in a house], but at Riderwood, Mom can just take a walk to meet friends or get anything she needs, she says. Now these things are all available to her in a safe environment. I don t have to worry about her. If she had stayed in the house, I would have worried about her being isolated and alone. Now that Lois has made the move, she can focus on her new life. Her daughter couldn t be happier that Lois is flourishing in her new environment. Lois likes the fact that people are all around her, and she meets new friends every night at dinner. But she doesn t feel pressured to be overly social if she doesn t want to be. She likes the opportunity to have it either way to be as independent or engaged in activities as she wants to be. Everyone here is so independent, and I like that, she says.

Living in the present

Without the encouragement and support of both her daughter and Riderwood s staff, Lois may have delayed moving even longer. And that s something her daughter is grateful didn t happen. And Lois, well, she s grateful for the support Riderwood gave her through the entire moving process. Even before my mother moved in, everyone here staff and residents treated her like a friend, like she belonged, Karen says. Lois is living life on her terms and is happy she has the support of both her family and her ever-growing friends at Riderwood. Here, I truly have everything I want and need, Lois says.