Hello, my name is Marquita. I live in Sacramento, CA and I've been in adult care for over 15 years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because I was raised by two grandparents and I have a fondness for elderly and disabled people. I like to help people and assist them because I know that they appreciate it and when I become an older person, I would like someone to care for me lovingly and kindly, that is why I do it. I'm fulfilled at the end of the day. I enjoy what I do and I have a lot of experience in it. I've also worked for administration and I have worked on the geriatrics unit.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to any caregiver would be to follow instructions closely, to take notice in what the patient is having difficulties in that you may be able to assist, have a close relationship with the family, find out things that are personal that the patient may or may not like, things that they can assist themselves in and would like to still feel independent in. Those things are very important because the elderly, if they are not suffering from dementia really don't like the fact that they can't be independent. So it's best to let them do as much as they can for themselves and just take one step at a time and be patient.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
My most memorable client was a little lady named Irene and she was in her 90s, 92 to be exact. Every morning when I would arrive we would start the grooming process, we took a shower, we shampooed her hair, we blow-dried her hair, curling ironed her hair, totally styled, I'd groom her fingernails and her toenails, then we'd proceed for breakfast after we became dressed. After we were dressed and had breakfast, she wanted to go for a vigorous walk. My first impression was that she was going to take me on a little slow walk down the street. Well, no, not Irene, she walked really fast, we went up hills, we went down hills, we went through parks and we went down bike trails. She had me gone and I was totally fascinated and the fact that she could outwalk me and after that, by the time lunch time would arrive, she'd have a book or something prior to that. Then by the time lunch would arrive, she would be ready to go and pick movies, things of that nature, go to the park, those type of things but she was very much a delight to me because when I'm in my 90s, I hope that I have that much.