As a life-long west-sider, Bea Entrekin had one requirement when she started looking for a senior living community.
“I wanted to stay on the west side,” said Bea, smiling.
After growing up in Edgewood, Iowa, during the Depression, she moved to the west side of Cedar Rapids for work after graduating high school during World War II. She’s been there ever since. Bea worked at Northwestern Bell and as a salesperson in a shoe department before getting married and having her two daughters. She enjoys gardening, canning, and quilting, but it’s her bible studies that took up most of her time. Bea was a bible study teacher for more than 30 years, offering classes in her home.
All this history in mind, it was important to Bea that she stay near her roots.
“When I started looking for somewhere to move, most places for seniors were on the east side at that time,” she said. “Meth-Wick was the only option over here. I certainly got lucky.”
Bea got to know Meth-Wick by sheer happenstance. Her daughter, Wendy, is a stockbroker and had a client who lived at Meth-Wick. She was out to visit the client and was struck by the beauty of the campus and residences. She told her mom to take a look.
It didn’t take long for Bea to realize this was the place for her. In 2007, she moved into an apartment at Deer Ridge. During her years living there, Bea always made sure to do her aerobics. Depending on the season, she’d take classes at The Manor, use the trails around campus, or walk the halls of Deer Ridge, checking in with friends as she walked.
The Entrekin family was so impressed with Meth-Wick that in 2009 Bea’s other daughter, Jena Hamilton, moved to Meth-Wick and took a position working the front desk of The Manor.
Bea and Jena recognize their situation is unique. There’s not many mother and daughter pairs living in the same community but Jena couldn’t be happier with her decision.
“The biggest advice I’d give someone thinking about moving to a senior living community is to do it before you think you need to,” shared Jena. “It gives you peace of mind to make the move on your schedule rather than waiting until you’re in a situation where you’re forced to move.”
Over the last year, Bea started to need a little more help around the house than when she first moved into her Deer Ridge independent living apartment in 2007. A campus social worker began a conversation with her about moving to a different style of living on campus, all the while keeping her daughters in the loop about their mother’s situation. A Custom Care assisted living apartment opened up at The Manor in April of this year and Bea made the easy move across campus.
This isn’t how this kind of story usually goes. Many older adults who find themselves in need of more assistance usually have to start a search for a whole new facility. But not at Meth-Wick. Bea had staff looking out for her wellbeing who realized she needed a change in her level of care and helped her transition to her new apartment in the same senior living community she’d been enjoying for more than a decade.
Jena said the whole process couldn’t have gone more smoothly.
“They really take care of the whole family and make sure we are all informed and comfortable with the situation,” she said.
Bea says she’s now one of the most ‘well-supervised’ residents at Meth-Wick. “I have one daughter who calls or stops over several times a week and Jena knows about all my appointments since she works at the front desk. Between the two of them, someone always knows what I’m up to!” laughs Bea.
Thanks to the flexible style of living options, Meth-Wick is the ideal home for both Bea and Jena’s lifestyles.