Hi, my name is Shohreh. I live in Fresno, CA and I've been a caregiver for 15 years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver because my father had Alzheimer's and I did try to help him, and I did try to understand him, and sometimes it was really hard on me. I watched the caregivers that were taking care of him, and I thought, I love this job, and I want to do the same, and I want to be a part of helping elderly people when they need the help. And I love what I'm doing.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be that this job is not a regular job. This job is something that you have to be very passionate about and this is about helping, having a passion, and putting a lot of love and interest into it. Because someday, when you get older, you need the help. What you're giving now, is what you're going to get it back in return when you are older.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client that I would never forget was Lillian. She lived in Los Angeles, and that was the time while I was living in Los Angeles, too. And I was the seventh caregiver that she was interviewing because she was very, very picky about special things, and when she saw me and she started talking to me, I just answered everything from my heart and very honest, and we did connect right away, and she hired me. At the beginning, she was like testing me and making sure that I'm the right person. And after a while, like a year or two, we were very connected, and we had a lot of fun together She had a reason to be happy and have happiness again, and I was really grateful to give her all these feelings that she's alive and she was looking forward for tomorrow. And every day before I left, I told her what we are going to do tomorrow and what is the plan, and she did like it very much, and I did like it, too, because I felt that I was very helpful and I was very important in somebody's life. And I was with her when she passed away. She was 99 years old. I will never forget my experience with her. The very funny days we had. We went to a lot of things together, and I was more than a caregiver to her. I was like her daughter. I was like her mother. And I also learned a lot from her, and that was a great experience for me.