Wed, Sep 19, 2018
Home Town Debate
Willapa Harbor Herald • Town Crier
Traveler's Companion
(360) 942-3466 • PO Box 706, Raymond, WA 98577

Sheaffer: Involvement vs. Isolation

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It's just me now, and since I've retired there's not much to do. Never was much on hobbies and a lot of times those I had were, at least partially, an escape from all the busy-ness around me.

I kind of miss some of the busy-ness.

Over the years, people have approached me with questions about where they could get together with other people of like age and interests. The conversation can take many turns and suggestions are made, thoughts shared and hopefully, some direction is found underlying this type of conversation is the thought--mostly un-vocalized--:

I get lonely.

Isolation creeps up on us. When all the family is around, when our jobs occupy our time and attention, when we're interacting with people throughout the day, isolation does not stare us in the face. In fact, during all this activity, sometimes we look for a little "alone time".

Being alone by choice is a whole different animal than being alone by circumstances forced upon us.

Many times, when someone experiences depression, isolation has already been paving the way.

Our communities offer many opportunities to jump back into socializing. Yes, there's social media, and skype is sort of close, but spending time with other living and moving beings that are bigger than our monitors is often preferred.

One such venue are the congregate meal sites. Lunches are available, but for a lot of people, the food is secondary. Sitting down with others, talking, laughing, reminiscing and sharing experiences is the real plus. These sites are located in Ilwaco and Raymond, plus the Peninsula Senior Activity Center (PSAC) in Klipsan Beach provides a variety of opportunities to get together.

Before moving on, here's the info regarding these sites:

  • Ilwaco Community Building (next to the hospital). For details, call 360 642 3990
  • Raymond Senior Center, 324 Jackson Street. Call 360 942 5739
  • PSAC offers a monthly calendar of events and activities and membership is $15/year. To become a member or get more information, call 360 665 3999 or check it out online.

Churches, fraternal organizations and community groups also offer the chance to join in and get involved. And if you have some difficulty getting out (another arrow in isolation's quiver), Dial-A-Ride could be the answer, as could someone already involved providing a ride.

Being alone is often a choice. Loneliness rarely is.

Information & Assistance

Long Beach: 360 642 3634/888 571 6558

Raymond: 360 942 2177/888 571 6557

www.o3a.org

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