Tell us a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
My name is Ofelia. I live in Santa Clara and I’ve been working as a caregiver for 15 years. I started my caregiving career when I began caring for my uncle who was 87 years old and needed gastrointestinal feeding. He needed to be taken cared of of 24/7 - changing his diapers, bathing him on the bed, and taking care of all his needs. I took care of him for five years before he passed away.
How did your mom inspire you to become a caregiver?
My mom had diabetes, hypertension and severe knee arthritis. I took care of her as well. She needed bathing, medication, daily needs and doctor appointments. When she passed away, I made a promise to myself to pursue this field further. I took a CNA class and was certified in 2009. I started taking care of seniors, which is now my passion.
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
One thing I learned in the years that I've been a caregiver, one very important thing with a client is go with the flow. Never try to argue with the client. Do as they please. If you know that it will endanger them, say it in a nice but convincing way until they understand.
How would you describe your style as a caregiver?
My clients say that I am a good caregiver because I never go against their wishes. If it will endanger them, I find a way to convince them of another idea. The most important thing is that I never leave their side. I'm always beside them.