Hi, my name is Shelly. I live in Pittsburgh, CA and I've been a caregiver for a little bit over 3 years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because I'd taken care of my parents, my mom and dad, before my dad passed away. Until then, my sister took over after that. It feels very rewarding to be able to take care of them in spite of their illness. Until now, I'm still taking care of the elderly.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be is to treat the patient as part of their family, but at the same time, not to be able to be too attached because it can be very painful after. Just to be a good listener and be fully aware of the patent's need. To be patient and make sure that they're always being looked after for what they need. Especially if they're taking medication, to make sure that they're given their medication in a timely manner.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client that I will never forget name is Jack. When I first took care of Jack, he had Parkinson's and Alzheimer's both at the same time. He was already bedridden when I got there before hospice got called in to take over. And until then, I was still working with the hospice. The patent's wife decided to keep me there with her to be able to accompany her at the same time. The reason why I can't forget Jack is because regardless when the hospice got there, he was very attentive to my voice. I can never ever forget that at our final hours, I was talking to him and told him that if he hears me or understand what I'm saying to squeeze my hand regardless or somehow make some movement on his fingers - and he did. As I was telling him that, his wife was right next to me and she saw him move his fingers to try to respond. It was very touching. It put tears into my eyes - it did that - as well as the wife became emotional. That was my most memorable patient until now.