Hi my name is Courtney. I live in San Marcos, CA and I have been doing caregiving for five years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver, because I kind of grew up seeing a lot of kids with special needs, so that's really been my focus. Working with children and kids with special needs, but I have taken care of a lot of elderly friends and helped them out in ways that I could. I have a sick grandma living with me right now. I have met many elderly people who needed assistance in different ways, so it's in my best to help and I'd really like to be able to make a career out of it, so that's why I want to be become a caregiver for those who are elderly and not just those who are children.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be to be patient, not be afraid to ask for help, or to ask if they need assistance or if you need a break. I think that working with kids with special needs and just my time working with those who are elderly really taught me good communication is really important with your client, with famly and with the people that you work with. It's very important to have good communication, to be very honest and open. It's very important to have patience. I think those are very important qualities and very important things to remember when you're working with people who need help.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I'll never forget is actually somebody who wasn't a client of mine. He was this really elderly old man and he was very sweet and I saw his caregiver, who was my friend, she was so patient with him in every step of the way from helping him with his medicine, bathing, taking him from one place to another, helping him make sense of things each day too. Ultimately in the end when he did end up passing away, I saw the patience that she had or the judgements that she had, and the firmness when she needed to be, and I really respected that and admired that, and I still use that when working with kids with special needs I work with right now. She is very fun and she changes behaviors. Sometimes she's very loving sometimes. She's upset. She's yelling. She's screaming. She's throwing and I've learned to be very patient and I've learned to kind of take each day one day at a time and to try to be a couple of steps ahead, try to have a backup plan, because you have to keep going no matter how hard things might get, no matter how challenging it might be emotionally or mentally, however way and just having a lot of patience and I think those are just two very important experiences that come across that are both very loving, very challenging, but they've been very rewarding.