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Wellness Blog

I Am Esquiline: Meet Marian M.

Meet Marian M.

What’s life like at The Esquiline?

Each person who lives here has a different answer to that question—that’s what makes it such a dynamic place to live. Everyone is free to pursue their own interests and because of that, everyone plays a part in shaping The Esquiline’s community by bringing their own special touch. Everyone can say “I Am Esquiline.”

For resident Marian M., that means baking for the community, lending a helping hand to fellow residents, and throwing herself into the daily activities at the St. Louis-area retirement community. Read on to get to know Marian and her experience at The Esquiline, a Life Plan Community at The Shrine.

Moving to the Retirement Community

Marian has lived at The Esquiline for nearly six years. She moved in on her birthday in 2013, after successfully selling her house in the middle of winter.

What made her decide to move?

“I like my own company but not that much,” she joked.

Now that she’s here, she’s enjoying the social scene and the people she has met.

“I love everyone here,” she said.

She added that she enjoys the easy access to Mass she has at the community. The Esquiline is located at the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows and offers daily Mass and weekly Protestant services. Residents’ spiritual needs are nurtured with help from the Pastoral Care team.

Marian also credited the physical beauty of the place with her decision to move. There are tree-lined walking paths, gardens, and the entirety of the National Shrine of Our Lady of the Snows to enjoy.

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Related: 6 Gorgeous Photos from The Esquiline Grounds

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A Day in the Life at the Esquiline

Although her schedule doesn’t look the same every day, you’ll often find Marian participating in community events and activities, as well as getting in her exercise.

“I always do everything on the activities schedule, plus I exercise every morning,” she explained.

Marian is known throughout the community for her baking, which is just as thoughtful as it is delicious. She makes birthday cakes or pies for her friends and employees, as well as anyone else she feels deserves a treat.

“The kitchen gives me bananas and I make banana bread for my friends, new residents, and anyone who I see doing something nice for anyone else,” she said. “I make a cake or pie for everyone here on their birthdays.”

Marian enjoys helping people whenever possible throughout the day. For example, she helps to set up Mass in the skilled nursing dining room every Sunday for upwards of 40 residents. She sets up the sacristy, then picks up residents from their rooms and helps them get seated for Mass.

Her reason for helping others is simple.

“I’m a happy person and I like to spread happiness,” she said.

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Related: Gardening at The Esquiline: A Resident Story

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Marian’s Background

Marian is from East St. Louis. She began teaching at a young age—18 years old to be exact—because of the war. Her class was made up of 12 students.

She went on to teach for 33 years in total. She had six children with her husband and they spent their 40th wedding anniversary in Hawaii. After her husband was no longer able to work, she worked at several part-time jobs for over 20 years. During that time, she worked at several different places, including H&R Block, Anchors Siding & Window, Famous-Barr Jewelry Department, and Vantage Home Builders.

Marian is a huge advocate for audible books. She loves reading but has macular degeneration and is legally blind, so she suggests the Talking Book System for people who like to read but have vision trouble. She uses a reading machine available in the Camp Room for reading recipes with small font.

I Am Esquiline

Marian plays a big part in The Esquiline community with her helpful and generous spirit. She’s not alone, though. Each resident plays a unique part. Join us for more “I Am Esquiline” stories by subscribing to our blog or following us on Facebook!

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