Hi my name is Jolie. I live in Los Angeles,CA. I've been a caregiver/CNA for five years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because I wanted to be a nurse and when I was done with high school, a lot of my nurses told me to start off as a caregiver, then move up my CNA and up. It's easier to get the experience, so that way I know for sure if I want to become a nurse. So i started to be a caregiver, then I did CNA and now I'm working on my LVN and because I enjoy helping others.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be that, treat the patient or the resident you're working with, like if it was your family member. Make sure you respect them. Treat them just like you would treat your family members and remember that just because they're older or going through an aging does not mean you do not give them privacy. They still need their independence, their dignity and also to let them do as much as they can, to keep their independence.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I would never forget, is when I was working at a assisted living, I had a patient that was in the memory unit and for some reason, I just liked him. I connected with him in a way, for some reason, because he was so sweet. Even though he was combative during his sundowning or during the sleep hours, I still feel like he was my most memorable patient. He used to hit us, but then he would grab our arm and he's like, "I'm sorry. I didn't mean that." or when we would redirect him when he was wandering and stuff, it was pleasant sitting with him and having a drink or tea or taking him out for a walk. I don't know. Whenever I think of this guy, I just think of happiness, because he was a very happy man and I know he was kind. I know it was the disease that made him become combative and also the way you approach him had an effect. If you approach at a certain time, if you approach him nice and calm, he will react better than if you come to him when he is sundown and something and you're like, "Okay, let's go do this." Then he's not himself. He gets combative. So anyway, that is my most memorable resident. He's a happy man and I know he was such a lovely man when he was younger and had his memory.