Hi, my name is Derrica. I live in Westwego, LA and I been a caregiver for four years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because when I was in high school my grandpa had a major heart surgery. And I actually, ended up taking up the job to help him with my grandmother before he passed away. And I actually liked it, giving the extra help, and with the doctor's appointments and shopping. It made me feel inspired to help someone that was in need.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver is to make sure you have patience. Patience can take you a very long way. Every client's different. Every client has a different diagnosis, but that is the first key to having patience.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client that I would never forget is John. I was working at Carrington Place of New Orleans. And it was actually him and his wife in one room. They grew old together since they were teenagers. And I came on the shift, and he was older, but his favorite drink was red wine. And I guess none of the other CNAs drink red wine. So when I came in to meet my new clients or whatever, he told me to come here. I got closer and he whispered, "Do you have any wine?" So I said, "No, Mr. John, I don't have any wine." He said, "Well, can you sneak me some?" And I was like, " I wish." I said, "What kind of red wine you drink?" And he had told me this old brand. And then I actually looked it up and it was very expensive. So he was asking me, 'Do I drink red? Or do I drink wine?' And I was like, "Yeah, I drink wine." And we just had a conversation that really lasted up to about a good 30 minutes. And from there we connected. The wife connected. She felt comfortable with me dealing with him because we connected so much. And she was just okay with it.