Hi, my name is Sylvia, and I live in Banning, CA. And I have been a caregiver for nine years.
How did you get into caregiving?
I became a caregiver after working as a medical assistant for 30 plus years and also because I did care for my father who was in hospice for the last three years of his life. And I would not have wanted him to have someone else but a family member such as myself take care of him. And I will always be grateful for that time that we were able to spend together. So, I feel that I've had the experience and I have the knowledge to help someone live the best few years that they may have left, and to make it enjoyable, and offer them my companionship.
What advice would you provide to a new caregiver?
My advice to a new caregiver would be to treat every client as a family member and to think of how you would want your parents or your loved ones to be taken care of by a caregiver. And to treat every day as an opportunity to make that day as enjoyable as possible, to listen to their stories, and to take an interest in what type of life that they might have led as younger people. I have found that the seniors do have some very interesting stories, and they've been to some amazing places, and done some incredible things. So lots of patience and lots of love.
Who is one of your most memorable clients?
A client I will never forget she was in her mid 90's and I always told her that I wanted her to be my mentor because she had such enthusiasm for life. She was a bubbly, happy go lucky, 90 pound woman that had bright spiky red hair. And she was bound and determined that after her surgery, she was going to begin, and sure enough, she deterred her symptoms and her illness, and gone to driving and shopping and still had an interest in fashion in her late 90's. I thought that was amazing.