Hi, my name's Doreen. I live in San Jose, CA and I have 2 years experience in caregiving.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because my mother needed assistance with her disability, and most recently with an aunt who passed away at age 99 and a half.
I have a great affinity for older people - for people in general - particularly those who are vulnerable and need care and who need companionship.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to any caregiver would be to always treat the client with respect and with dignity, the same as you would like to be treated yourself, to always listen carefully to what they have to say, to be open to their comments and to include them in discussions, and listen to their needs and address them.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I will never forget is Lillian, who happened to be deaf, but was a lip-reader and could speak. But after a medical procedure, she, of course, had to remove her teeth - her old dentures - for the procedure. So afterward, as she was coming out of anesthesia, I was talking to her, but because she didn't have any teeth in her mouth, she was difficult to understand. So while she was still somewhat compromised by the after effects of the anesthetic, I had to try to put the teeth in her mouth without any assistance from her, and it really was quite, quite humorous. We both got quite a few laughs out of it, trying to shove these dentures back into her mouth. We laughed about it for quite some time afterward.