Can you tell us a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
My name is Christina and I live in San Francisco. I have been a caregiver for six years. I got into caregiving because my family does it. My mother is a nurse, and my two sisters are also caregivers. I like helping other people who can't help themselves anymore.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
I was working with a client named Arlene and we had some good times. She has sickle cell and sometimes she gets really sick. Sometimes she can't cook and she'll fight me because she wants to cook. So it's exciting sometimes! I like it.
What did you learn from Arlene?
Arlene has taught me to appreciate life. One day you can be running, doing everything you used to do, and then the next you can't. But she didn't want you to feel sorry, she just said, "Treat me as you would treat me any other day."
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
If I can give one piece of advice to a caregiver who's just starting, it's to be yourself and treat them like they're one of your family members. Relax and try to open up as much as possible, so they can connect with you and you can connect with them.