Can you tell me a little about yourself and how you got into caregiving?
Hi. My name is Robbyn. I live in Vallejo, California, and I've been a caregiver for five years. The person who inspired me to become a caregiver was my father. He ran his own boarding care home, and I stayed in there while I was in high school for about four years. And, professionally, I've been in this business for about five years. After living with my father for almost four years, it kind of came naturally to me.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
The client I'll never forget is the woman I'm working for now. I've worked for her for four months, and I've literally watched her go from someone that's super-fantastic - full of energy, funny, jokes, jokes around - to her deteriorating into something that I had to get ready for. She's my first hospice patient. She started off with mild dementia, and now she has severe dementia. What I admired about her most was that she was hilarious. She joked around a lot. She was actually a schoolteacher, and she still has that hardness. She's about five foot, and she just acts like she's about seven foot feet. She's hecka funny. She's full of life. She likes her nails painted. She likes her hair washed. She likes Jeopardy. She's an amazing person.
What piece of advice would you give to a new caregiver?
What are your strengths as a caregiver?
A piece of advice I would give to a new caregiver is to be supportive, open-minded, have patience, and be understanding, for the simple fact that these people are deteriorating from something that they're dealing with physically and emotionally, and they need you to be there to keep them afloat.
What I think makes me a good caregiver is that I'm loving. I'm genuine. I'm fun. I'm outgoing. I love people. I'm very understanding. What I'm most proud of as a caregiver are the relationships that I've built, and are able to continue to build, with the patients that I have. It's just something that I'm good at.