I recently met an older woman and her husband here in Germany. She was very friendly and described one of her favorite past times: square dancing. She and her husband danced for many years, even when they retired. They traveled to different countries, such as the US in competitions. Dancing was a love for her. It gave her physical exercise, social interaction with new people, allowed her to visit new cities and countries, and provided an activity she and her husband could enjoy together (thus strengthening their marriage).
She looked down in sadness as she spoke to us, describing the end of their dancing, as she had to have a hip replacement. The hip replacement promised many additional years of her favorite past time. Unfortunately, there were complications and she can no longer dance. Loosing the ability to dance not only affected her, it affected her husband (who no longer has a partner) and their close friends with whom they danced and traveled. It was a substantial loss.
When asked if she had a new hobby, she did… and good for her! She has taken up quilt making. This has given her a new interest and keeps her mind busy. I asked if I could come to her house and a few weeks later, I did just that. She showed me a few quilts she sewed. They were simple, but she was very proud.
Experiencing a change in your social life is often difficult and sometimes brings sadness. In this woman’s case, she might have to interact with her friends from square dancing in a different setting, but at least they can continue to visit and socialize. If you have had a situation like this occur, try to view it positively. Take this opportunity to try something new, to expand your horizons and make new companions! Many communities offer activities for seniors and there is always a need for volunteers. Check out your local paper or visit your library (there are often community events posted there).
See the source below for additional activity suggestions.