Families Share Assisted Living and Memory Care Stories

How do you know when the time has come for Assisted Living or Memory Care? There are as many answers as there are people facing the question.

Mike Nolte moved to this area and was facing a different challenge. His 60-year-old wife Jewel was undergoing some puzzling changes in personality and behavior. “We looked into every possible explanation, including thyroid disease and depression. We had just moved back to Virginia to what should have been a happy time in our lives.” Then came a diagnosis of dementia.

Up in Northern Virginia, Peggy Dowd, grandmother of Franklin resident Meghan Councill, seemed to be managing well alone in the large house she had lived in with her late husband for many decades. Then, she suffered a fall. Her family also learned that her social life and activities had been reduced to weekly hair appointments and church services.

Each of these families had reached a crossroad.

Mike Nolte initially chose to care for his wife himself. “Taking care of Jewel at home was not a burden. I was proud to do it. She is my best friend, my lover, my spouse. But eventually friends helped me accept the fact that I could no longer do it all myself.” In October, Jewel also became one of the first residents of Asa’s Neighborhood.

Mike told us about a recent visit, after he and Jewel had walked across the campus to enjoy a meal at The Village Back Porch & Grille. “She said to me, ‘You know, I like living here.’ It gave me chills. And it also lifted 100 pounds off my shoulders.”

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Just a few months ago, Peggy Dowd came down from Northern Virginia to visit her daughter in Franklin, to tour the Village, and enjoy lunch at that same restaurant. According to granddaughter Meghan, “That day was all it took.” Mrs. Dowd soon moved to an Assisted Living apartment and Meghan reports, “I have witnessed a transformation in her. It is exactly where she wants and needs to be. She has social, mental and physical stimulation. She is busier and has more of a social life than ever. I am so proud of how she has adapted and actually flourished at The Village.”

Texie Marks, Director of Marketing, may have summed it up perfectly for her own and for many other families. “Many times it may not be an easy decision but it’s quite clear that in most instances lives of loved ones and families can be significantly improved by moving into Assisted Living or Asa’s Neighborhood at The Village.”