Carol Zandstra chose worry-free retirement living at Park Place of St. John. Here is her story:
Carol and her husband had lived in their home in Highland for many years. “I call it a ‘kid house’ because it was just a fun place to raise a family. We had a two-story on a lake, with all our bedrooms upstairs. We had a lot of get-togethers and holidays there. It was a fun place to have kids.”
Then Carol’s husband had open heart surgery, and later was diagnosed with leukemia. “It got hard to live there,” Carol says. “Bedrooms upstairs meant we had to install a chair to help him up the stairs. The bathtub was too difficult for him to safely step into. One day he said, ‘We can’t keep fixing this house for me.’ That’s why we came to see Park Place.”
They both loved the model apartment they saw during construction. Her husband chose the particular apartment because of the two-bedroom, two-bathroom layout, and their garage being right across the hallway. They planned to move in when Park Place opened, but Carol’s husband passed away before they could move in. She decided to keep the same apartment, and she has no regrets. Her grandkids and daughter have stayed overnight in the spare bedroom, and she still uses that garage right across the hall.
“You don’t have to worry about anything here.” Carol says of her worry-free retirement living at Park Place of St. John.
“Even now sometimes, I’ll lay in bed, and a thunderstorm will wake me up, and I think, if I was home, I’d be worried about my sump pump running down in the basement. If I was all alone in my big house, and if I fell down, no one would know until they came and found me. Here there’s cords you can pull to get help. Here, you’re safe.”
Carol has also taken advantage of the Park Place Health & Wellness Center, conveniently located next door for rehabilitation and skilled nursing services, after a surgery last summer. And she appreciates that Park Place keeps retirement living simple. “You don’t have to worry about anything here. I don’t have to worry about water bills, snow, taking out garbage. Everything is part of my monthly fee.”
Carol just turned 80 and is still active at her local church and with her family. In fact, her great-grandchildren come for dinner on Tuesdays, and she drives where she wants to go. But when she wants to let someone else do the driving, she takes the Park Place bus to the store or to an outing.
“You can be as active as you want here. It’s the best of both worlds—living in your own home, and letting someone else do most of the work,” she says. “I truly enjoy it.”