CLL Support Association
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Lifestyle changes

Yes Cll and other medical conditions change your life all right. We have moved into a retirement block. I am not even 60 yet and my husband is only 62 and not yet retired. Once a upon a time I thought the idea of theses retirement blocks were terrible. Its shunting old people into gettos where they should just be a part of normal society as they are part of normal society. I have now changed my mind. Since the beginning of the year I have had infection after infection mostly throat infections. I have lost count of the antibiotics I have taken. My husband has diabetes and Parkinsons both managed well with medication. But there was no escaping the fact that we were not the people we once were. When we meet up with people of the same age we seem old and tired. We felt we had to move while we could and wanted to rather than wait until we had to or perhaps couldn't. I have to say we love the community here. There is a sense of belonging. We feel safe and secure. Have we done the right thing? Only time will tell.

7 Replies

Hi Jangreen. Thanks for sharing what must have been a big upheaval in your lives. I guess CLL forces some degree of lifestyle change on all of us, so good on you for making that big and difficult decision now, while it is easier, despite it being against your earlier preconception. Perhaps your preconception helped you take more care in assessing whether this decision was right for you and your husband?

I'm very pleased to hear that you feel safe and secure and love the community. Perhaps it's like the difference between a house and a home; it's the people that make the difference.

Enjoy making new friendships and becoming part of an inclusive community; sounds to me like you are already making it the right thing to have done :) .



Obviously this wasn't what you had in mind for this time in your lives Jan but health concerns make us reassess and re-evaluate. To be able to say you love where you live, you feel safe and secure and have a sense of belonging shows that this was absolutely the right decision for you.

Trouble is there's such ageism and misunderstanding out there but I never make assumptions based on age. I know too many Saga louts and elderly reprobates to be daft enough to do that! :-) I'm sincerely hoping to live long enough to be one!

It's not what you had in mind but it sounds like it's meeting your changed circumstances in a positive way. Hope you both continue to be happy and contented in your new home.



trust me Jan few of us are what we were and whatever works for you and your hubby has got to be alright, especially if you find it an enlightening and enjoyable situation.

Enjoy your new life.


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Like you my husband and I moved into a private retirement apartment 3 years ago.. We were 63 and 69 respectively. I was extremely reluctant initially as did not feel ready for this stage in our lives and was looking forward to doing all the things we had planned for our retirement. We like holidays, walking, eating out and I had several hobbies. Unfortunately my husbands CLL took a turn for the worse and we can no longer do the walking, as he also has lung problems and cannot walk distances, have had problems with travel insurance and have had to cancel several trips away as severe infections took over. Feel sometimes that CLL rules our lives. trips to GP and hospital are now very frequent. However, on the plus side, the move has been positive for both of us, we are still independant and see family and grandchildren several times a week, eat out at least once a week, join in with the activities if we wish too and also know that in the event of the death of either partner, the surviving one will be safe and secure in a happy manageable environment. We have no garden or our own to worry about but have a beautiful courtyard garden and outside space managed by a gardener and complex is set in a park so we are surrounded by outside space. My husband can watch cricket, football, tennis and bowling out of the window according to the season. The future is unknown but we are glad we made the decision and hopefully we will still have some years to enjoy our remaining retirement



CLL changes our lifestyle, our hopes and dreams for the future, and makes us change and adapt our plans.

CLL is an unwanted lodger that comes into our lives under the pretence of being "the good Cancer" but soon takes over our comfortable, settled and probably pre planned lifestyles. It makes us change everything we had ever taken for granted and puts our lives on a completely new and frightening new path with no sat nav to guide us.

CLL is the nuisance neighbour that disrupts our quiet and peaceful existence and makes our lives a misery. Unfortunately it cannot be evicted.

Whatever we can do to get at least some of our independence, lifestyle choices and future plans back under our control, for whatever time we can, must be a good thing.

Jangreen and Fannynorthy i really hope you enjoy your new homes and get to spend many years doing so.



Yes, lifestyle changes are in our minds not only because of our illnesses but also most people with CLL are in or nearing retirement. However there is the problem of when and the right choice of property and location, so we tend to suffer and put it off also if you have lived in your house for a long time it is more than a house it is a home with your life described in every room and a base for your children no matter how old they are to come back to, security, a fortress, the place where they grew up and then what do you do with all your furniture and possessions some probably inherited from one's own parents and grandparents, the children do not want it, 'brown goods' are out of fashion they've been to Ikea and in any case, they have all they want.

Eight years ago I had no thought of retirement, then one day my doctor rang to discuss a recent blood test, he said very little except they should have spotted it two years beforehand and arranged an appointment with a haemotologist, well the anxiety was there, I could not wait, I saw him the next day privately to hear my fate, was handed a book , told about Watch and Wait, and when I asked the question we all asked 'How long have I got Doc?' he said, 'It could be six months or thirty years!' So with that sort of glass have empty attitude taking the worst case scenario, I, realising my wife could not handle it, decided to sell up giving my siblings first refusal. Well I am still here but my wife fell ill three and a quarter years ago and is housebound, I am now her carer and do not have much physical or mental time to consider my own condition and possible mortality all made doubley worse because I am in desparate need of new hips only getting around on two sticks, with hindsight I should have got it done twenty years ago but now I have been prevented because of my CLL.

So a lifestyle change is due but there is fear of the unknown and the feeling of letting the side down and deserting one's post. The house or home that I live in I bought forty six years ago it is five thousand square feet in two acres of garden fortunately we are well served in the house and garden and really only live in part of it, rooms are cleaned every week that no one goes in so it makes sense to at least down-size. a retirement community sounds inviting as going out at the moment, at least for my wife, is a no-go but could I live in a flat? I don't know, maybe for a while but what then! I have thought of renting my house out so I can move back or giving it to one son and buying somewhere else, but then the other son would moan, whatever, I need to do something, the meter is ticking ever faster and there's not much left on the clock!!


Hi thankyou for all your posts as they show we are not alone at having to make these choices. Best wishes to all


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