Living in a retirement house: Jonathan’s experiences after the first year



After a long year, I would like to tell you about living here in the retirement home Rudolf. It’s been almost a year since I moved here. The early spring went fast. I got to know so many people in my life that changed me as a person. I got a certain perspective of the world that I never thought I would know and understand so early in my life.  The fact that I had the opportunity to live here, has made me a different person. It made me more open-minded and, above all, my understanding of being old, changed. We all grow and get old and finally when the time comes, we get to the end of our lives. I think life should be celebrated. Because we only live ones and we should make the best of it, even in the very end.

After the moving was over, I started meeting the people who lived here. The elderly are so heartwarming and friendly to me, that I immediately felt like home and that I belonged here. I started by just talking with them in the cafeteria and meet them in small groups. I found my place in the art group, where we all painted and drew all sorts of things. I was in many spring- and summer trips and got to bake a few times.

I met my neighbor in the first days of my moving. Her name is Taimi, and she lives just next door. I usually go to her, and we talk about the world and share ideas. We both paint a draw a lot, and I feel like it’s how she expresses herself, just like I do. She makes me so happy and truly she inspires me. Sometimes she tells me about her history and her past, what it was like when she was in my age. And I love to listen to her, because I know, that these moments are special. To connect with people has become more important to me, because of the social media, that disconnects people in some way, that we don’t even realize it.

Living in a retirement house, isn’t different at all. In fact, it’s very simple. We are just much closer neighbor’s. We take care and keep in touch with each other. And living here is also a proof, that friendship is never defined by persons’ age or gender. It should never be defined by anything. I also have an understanding of what it is like to be living here as an elderly. How lonely it can be. Everyone living in their own box, and relaying on their own health and well-being. Just to talk with someone, is so important to them, because they need that connection with people. With just being kind to one another, and truly talk with people face to face, is a start. It makes a difference, and you slowly realize how it changes others, as well as yourself.

My life has also changed a lot this year. I graduated a pastry chef, and currently I work in bakery, and doing what I truly love. I travelled the world, I met so many wonderful people, and living here is truly one of the best experiences in my life, that I will keep in my mind forever.

Although the year is almost over, our project does not end here. It is only just beginning.

Have a wonderful Halloween, and until next time.


Picture: Pertti Nisonen