Hi, my name is Carmen. I live in the city of La Habra, CA and I've been a caregiver for five years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver when I was taking care of my friend's mother who needed care for making her food, taking her to the store, and she had broken her foot, so I was helping her with therapy as well. And I enjoyed doing it, and then I had the opportunity to take care of a lady that had dementia. But I do enjoy people. I worked in the dentistry for 38 years, so I was always around people. All ages. All walks of life. So I do enjoy working with people in general.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be making sure that you're very attentive, very alert. Giving the patient a lot of love and care. A lot of attention. Lots of patience because elderly people are lonely, and a lot of them are depressed. You have to be able to understand them and be very patient with them because they need a lot of love.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I will never forget is my friend Sandra. I worked in the dental office, and Sandra used to be a patient of ours, which I've known for 32 years. We became good friends, and five years ago, she was diagnosed with dementia, and I've been taking care of her ever since. She's been like a big sister to me, and her son needed someone to take care of her here in California because he lives in Vancouver, Washington, and that's where he's going to be moving her next week. She's my little Jewish princess, and she has a good sense of humor. Always laughing and making me laugh, and we always enjoy laughing with each other, and I'm going to miss her a whole lot. So I'm just happy because she's not going to be here alone anymore, and she's going to be with her family.