Can you tell us a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
My name is Alma, and I live in Redwood City, California. I am a caregiver because of my mom. I want to help my mom when she gets older and I want to prepare myself to give her the best care that she deserves. I've been a caregiver for almost 17 years.Who is one of your most memorable clients?
Catherine is the first client that comes to my mind. When other caregivers tried to giver her food she always rejected. She would throw everything. She never wanted to eat. And little by little I was watching her and the way that she acted, and I thought little by little I can do better things for her. I started asking if I could do a pedicure. She'd say, "No, no, no, no, no, no. Why do you want to do a pedicure?" And then she decided she would give me permission, and I could do it. Little by little we became very close friends besides my being her caregiver.
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver is to do it with your heart. If a caregiver doesn't put her heart into it, it's very hard to do the job. If you just do it for money or if you just do it because it's just a job, it is not going to work. You have to put your heart and you have to put yourself in their shoes and feel what they feel and think what they think. One day you too will be at that place, and you will want a person to take care of you the best they can.