Rosemary’s 78th Birthday

Senior Independent Living:  Rosemary’s 78th Birthday

Here we introduce you to Rosemary, her family, and her community.  Although Rosemary lives alone, we learn how her community keeps her safe in her own home, so she can maintain her independent lifestyle.

Today is Rosemary’s birthday and the whole family will be in her house for a late lunch; Rosemary hopes there will be cake.  Rosemary discarded the idea of making a cake for her birthday; no one should make their own birthday cake.  That would be silly.  Rosemary’s son and daughter-in-law insisted that they will be bringing and preparing the whole lunch as well as the cake.  Rosemary likes to prepare meals for the family, but it has been a long time since she has had the chance.

Rosemary lives alone in a one level rancher in a smallish town in Washington State.  Her son, Alex lives 12 miles out of town with his wife Jen and their two daughters, Kelly and Gwen.  Rosemary’s daughter Nicole, lives in Denver and visits twice a year, she has no children and is not married.  Rosemary was widowed 4 years ago, when her husband, Bob of 52 years died from a heart attack.  Rosemary has been handling things around the house well.  Her husband had kept up the maintenance on the house so thoroughly, that Rosemary does not have much to do except manage her tiny garden.  The lawn is mowed weekly by a neighbor boy, Riley, who is 13 years old and according to Rosemary, is often careful not to mow her flowers.

Rosemary has a unique relationship with two of her neighbors who keep an eye on her.  Her neighbor across the street is a retired schoolteacher named Mr. Garrison.  Mr. Garrison who prefers to be addressed by his last name only, makes sure that Rosemary picks up her newspaper every day from her front steps.  Mr. Garrison will knock on her door if he sees that Rosemary’s newspaper is not picked up by 1100 am, to make sure she is alright.

Rosemary’s backyard neighbor a 30 something bachelor named Jackson, makes sure that she turns off her back porch light every evening before bed.  If he does not see her light turned off before he goes to bed, he stops by to check on her.  This system was set up during a backyard BBQ last year and it makes Rosemary’s son, Alex, feel better about his mother living alone.  Rosemary of course thinks that this is all a little silly.  She feels that she is doing fine going about her business and finds this a little intrusive, but likes both of her neighbors so she does not complain.  She once forgot to turn off her back porch light and Jackson knocked on her door, she was a little embarrassed.  Rosemary has not forgotten to turn off her light before she goes to bed since that incident.  Jackson is always wearing those funny running shorts and she would rather he did not come over wearing those.

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