Hello! My name is Donisha, and I've been a caregiver for eight years, and I live in Lompoc, CA.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because, I found enjoyment in helping others, and also my mother had some mental health issues and I ended up caring for her, and, after I got my CNA and my phlebotomist, so I could help. And, I ended up helping a husband and wife then, and found it very enjoyable, me giving back, so that's why.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be, to always take time and listen to the person you're caring for. Even if they don't always know what's going on, they do know what's going on, and they can feel your energy. Always be patient, and take care of them, and be kind, and remember to listen. Sometimes we forget to listen and to be patient, and that's to me, the most important thing, is to show compassion and patience.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I never will forget is, this lady that I took care of at the nursing home. Her name was Jane. Jane was very mean to most of the CNAs-- actually, to the newbies. So, it was my first night there. She had a problem with my race. She did not want me to take care of her. So I went in, and she was very mean. And she was like, "No, I don't want you." She was very, very disrespectful. And I just smiled and said, "I'm the only one that's here to help you today, and I'm going to get you through this as easy as I can as long as I have your cooperation." And she said, "Okay. Fine." And so after working with her a couple of weeks, she ended up requesting me to come in over anyone else because I took the time, I gave her what she needed, and I listened to her needs and I wasn't rushed or made her feel that she was being rushed or anything like that. And, we ended up becoming the best of friends. So that's one client that I will never forget. After you've helped somebody, their impression and views can always change for the better.