Gwen Beckler heard of Edgewood Senior Living while looking to transition her mom Marilyn into a senior community in 2013. Several years later, she swapped roles from a family member to being on staff as the Marketing Director of the Mandan, North Dakota, Edgewood Vista location. Seeing the way employees treated residents and visitors made her realize this was a community she wanted to be a part of.
Transitioning to senior care
Marilyn had a bad fall followed by a series of strokes, along with hints of dementia. She returned home after hospitalization and rehab to try living independently, but soon learned that her residence wasn't set up for the type of care she needed. The family visited several senior living communities near where they lived in Bismarck, and opted for Edgewood Vista because it, "Felt like home."
Marilyn stayed at the Bismarck location in an independent living apartment. There, she received optimal care, and her family saw why the Bismarck Tribune awarded Edgewood Vista Bismarck as the 2015 Best of the Best Retirement Community for the third year in a row.
The senior's six children visited frequently, making use of the community spaces. If Gwen had her hands full upon arrival, an Edgewood staff member always offered to help. The little things, like making coffee for the family and sharing friendly greetings every time they passed by, made Gwen feel that her mom was in the right place.
From family to staff
When Gwen was job hunting in 2015, she saw an opening at the Mandan Edgewood Vista and knew she had to apply. This decision wasn't just so she could be close to Marilyn – she wanted to be a part of the community that is the Edgewood staff.
"We are a little-big community. We have small individual communities, but also we're a larger business. This provides us with access to resources while still having a small, hometown feel," Gwen shared.
In January 2015, Marilyn required more assistance. She made the move to the Edgewood Vista in nearby Mandan to take advantage of the assisted living, pre-memory care and memory care offerings. Gwen and her family were glad to know their mom would be able to stay in one place and receive the level of care she needs as her dementia and other medical requirements change.
The short 8.5 minute drive from Gwen's home in Bismarck is even more worthwhile when Marilyn pops into her office to say hi in the morning.
"While I sometimes have to separate being an Edgewood employee from being a resident's family member, the ability to take a break and stop by my mom's apartment to say hello is very meaningful to me. I am thankful for the opportunity to work here and know that my mom and all our residents are in good hands," Gwen said.
In her new position as marketing director, Gwen tells potential new residents to look for a community that gives them a sense of home. She found that special place for her mom at Edgewood Senior Living.