Stan is 65 years old, is retired, a widower, and lives alone. He brought photographs to his interview which helped us understand three key themes of his current life: space to be (or not to be), impact of time, and resilience.
Space to be (or not to be)
“That’s down at (name of place) we went there me and wife went there first time it were open so I thought I’d go down and have a look.”
A combination of having no money and caring for his wife meant that Stan’s horizons had been very limited. After the loss of his wife, he started to venture out again. Stan qualified for a bus pass and this meant he could explore new places and revisit those which held great personal importance. Having space, and the chance to be in specific spaces, had a positive impact on Stan’s health and well-being.
Impact of time
“I went fishing and about fourth bollard out. The bollards there it’s nice and clear and I got three or four fish there.”
“Not as much as I used to as I were just looking after the wife like with her being poorly and I’ve started going back.”
While Stan was caring for his wife, time for himself was very limited. Fishing is one way he now spends his time. Being outside and the achievement of catching fish, which he then returns to the water, supports his health and well-being.
“That’s me garden that I used to look after. Since me wife died haven’t been bothered about doing it.”
“That’s Homebase where I do me shopping for me garden which I do on a wheelchair as it costs five pound to get me stuff home.”
Stan was a carer for his wife at home before she died in hospital. He misses her deeply and for some time was unable to focus on things he used to enjoy. However, Stan has started to re-engage and shows great determination and creativity in overcoming some of the difficulties of his life.
“That’s hospital where I lost my wife. I don’t like going there.”