Aging in Place
My mother was born in HER mother’s bedroom at 970 Park Avenue in 1924. While she has traveled the world, Manhattan has always been home to her. She would not have it any other way. For her, as for many other aging and elderly adults, New York offers the best possible lifestyle as the years go by.
If you are fortunate enough to live in a fully serviced building, you already enjoy your own version of assisted living. Doormen can receive your packages, announce your visitors, get you cabs and help you into them. The handyman or super can address most of the physical issues which may arise in your apartment. Food of every variety, prepared or not, can be delivered to your door at almost any hour of the day or night. Movies, musical events, lectures, Broadway shows, and restaurants are just a short ride away. And no driving is required.
For those without family and friends nearby, isolation can be the biggest problem. Increasingly, my friends in their 60s and 70s try to plan ahead around this issue. We can begin now to assemble affinity groups of like-minded contemporaries in our buildings and neighborhoods. I have always referred to my building, with its 86 apartments, as a vertical village. We have known many of the other villagers for years. What could be better for us, and them, and our friends in surrounding buildings, than to begin now to plan ways to support each other as we get older? Meeting for meals, enjoying events together, and being available in times of crisis: we can offer all this to each other while aging in place in the homes and city we love.
Like my mother, I am a born and raised New Yorker. Florida and Arizona may be both warm and beautiful, but they do not resonate for me. I want to be able to go to the opera, to enjoy the plantings in the Shakespeare and Conservatory Gardens, to see new shows at MOMA and cutting edge performances at BAM. I want to be able to remain close to my friends of all ages, to my daughter and her husband, to the colleagues I have enjoyed over so many years of work. For all these reasons, New York is the ideal retirement community for me!