It’s clear that Susan Stiller is someone who knows the importance of enjoying life.
In fact, it was Bethany Village’s snow tubing and water tubing trips that helped her decision to move to the community at age 71, one year after retiring.
“I felt that a community that goes snow tubing at Roundtop in the winter and tubing down the Yellow Breeches in the summer shows a “can-do” spirit that encourages people to try new things no matter what their age,” Susan says.
Diving in to community life
Since coming, Susan has been an active member of the community and embraced its wellness-focused lifestyle. In particular, she enjoys the well-equipped fitness center, pool and full schedule of classes, and concerts and lectures – all of which were important factors in her decision to choose Bethany from the other communities and senior living options she considered.
Susan now chairs the Bethany Village Arts Committee, which spotlights resident art in hallways and gathering places around the community, plays piano during Vespers services, and, as the photo above makes clear, also enjoys Bethany Village’s weekly ping pong games.
She has formed fast friendships with the other residents on her wing, Susan says: “We throw monthly birthday parties, and if there isn’t one to celebrate, we just have a party anyway!”
‘People really care about each other’
The transition from a 1,600 square foot home with a garage to a one-bedroom apartment was not without some thought, she acknowledges.
“Sometimes I miss my garage and the space I had, but I certainly don’t miss the stress and work of home ownership,” Susan says. She has hosted family dinners for six from her kitchen and when her granddaughters spend the night, they “make the space work just fine,” she says. And Susan is quick to say that your home isn’t as important as the entire experience you gain by living at Bethany Village.
“Plus, I have great views of sunsets and thunderstorms from my balcony,” she laughs. “The time I spent maintaining my house, I now spend out with people or just relaxing.”
Asked about the benefits she attributes to her decision to move while still young and active, Susan points to the many new friends she has found. “People here really care about each other and watch out for one another,” she says.
In addition, moving to Bethany Village means her children don’t have to worry as she ages or if she experiences health challenges. “The continuing care concept is a big plus,” Susan says. “I wanted to spare my children the burden of elder care, clearing out and selling a house and having to make decisions about nursing care or related issues.”