Can you tell me a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
My name's Alexis, I'm from Pittsburg, California, and I've been a caregiver for the past three-plus years. I had become a caregiver because I like taking care of people, and I have five siblings so I've been doing it for a long time. The person who inspired me to become a caregiver was my dad. He's always taken care of me and I wanted to return the favor when he got sick and take care of him. It's been very inspirational. In my career as a caregiver, I care for different types of people such as people with dementia, people that's had many types of disabilities, just many different types.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I'll never forget is Christopher. He was wheelchair-bound. He couldn't talk but he could understand. A lot of people didn't want to take care of him or deal with him because of his disabilities and he wasn't able to do anything for himself. I didn't mind it because he always smiled. That's one thing he did was smile. And he was entertaining. And I had no idea that he could actually understand me till I sit in [?] and he started laughing [laughter]. Oh man. The most challenging client was a guy, he had quite a few behavior problems. Quite a few. I think the way I got through to him was just listening to him, just listening to him and kind of just letting his emotions play out. And he had gotten better when it started working and doing well. Got kicked out but got right back in, and he was good after that.
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
What is your proudest moment as a caregiver?
The best piece of advice I would give to a new caregiver is to be patient. You have to be patient because you're going to be faced with a lot of tasks. Some of them will be difficult, but it's very rewarding in the end. What I think makes me a good caregiver is the fact that I had a stroke myself. I was 24 years old so I really do know what it's like to have somebody kind take care of you and be with you and kind of guide you. I think people need that. It means a lot, and who doesn't want to be treated kind.
One of my proudest moments as a caregiver was taking care of a guy who liked to snatch and grab at females. I had him for about six months. He never did it to me, and I thought that was something.