Hi, my name is Sheyanne. I live in Oakland, CA and I've been a caregiver for four years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because my father went through a lot of medical challenges which eventually started to take a toll on my mom. She called out for my assistance and asked me to take the lead in taking care of him. And I did just that without a second thought.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be, one, pay attention. Ask questions. Be sensitive to the client's needs and just be willing to make changes so that the client is comfortable. Also, ask questions. Get to know the family members. Get to know the client themselves so that you will have better techniques or ways, or ideas that you can try in caring for them. I would say be a listener. More importantly, treat them the way you would want to be treated, the way you would want your parents to be treated, or just any loved one. Be aware that the client themselves is going through a challenge.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I will never forget is Joyce. I remember starting with Joyce and she was, of course, kind of distant, closed off. She didn't know me, so it took for both of us a kind of warming up to each other. She took her time in getting comfortable with me but she always had wonderful stories to share about her family, stories about her sisters. In the time that I did care for Joyce, we became like family and I will never forget her. I appreciate the love, the opening-up, and the connection that we did have.