Old people in geriatric hospice: young attractive hispanic woman working as nurse takes care of a senior man on wheelchair. She talks with him then goes away to help other patients

A few weeks ago we were talking about how we became caregivers on the Facebook page. I was surprised by how many professional caregivers said they didn’t have a choice in the matter, it just happened. I was also surprised by how many parents and spouses said they chose to be caregivers when there was an unexpected healthcare emergency.

The biggest thing that stood out for me was how many of the people in our community have both provided paid care for work and unpaid care to a friend or family member.

So, how did you become a caregiver? Did you have a choice in the matter, or was it something you just had to do?


At first I really want to work in the hospital. Since I was in primary then my secondary school, I made my decision to study nursing. Unfortunately, I got married when I was only sixteen.

I’ve been a good mother of seven. I went to school just to inquire some other details for my kids.

Its just so happened that I saw caregiving course. Really don’t have any ideas about it. So I enrolled the class for almost nine months. So excited to finish my class despite of all challenges, circumstances and even lack of transportation expenses.

I just gave my all just to get into the finishing line. And yes I did it!! Passed the exams!!

After a year one of my colleagues called and introduced me to her client (patient). Got my job!!

From 2009 up to present (my patient passed away 2012) they still kept me and they also allowed me to work. But I will still stay with them.

Billy Jean

I started caregiving in 2008. I went to work for a company that cared for
folks with developmental​ disabilities. It is a rough field but managed
stay for a year and a half. I decided to leave there when I realized my own
physical capabilities. I was 57 at the time.Kathy


For me becoming a caregiver came with my profession which I chose, but I think I would become a caregiver anyway.

Amanda


31 years ago I helped a lady I knew from a restaurant I worked at! Then after gaining much life experience and skill I decided to start my own company!

Rich


My mom’s first open heart surgery happened when I was 12yrs old. Became a caregiver then…. Became a live in caregiver for an elderly lady at 18. Going on 36 now and am currently on my 8th person don’t know that I’ll ever stop.

Cameo


Going to see my Grandpa in a long term facility. Then I was trained as a CNA at the same facility. Then I was trained as a nurse at another facility. I found I really enjoyed working with the elderly. I loved to listen to their stories about when they were younger. When I go see my Oma, I still love to talk to the resident’s and hear their stories about when they were younger. I had to retire completely when I was 32 due to MS.

Krissy


 

Written by Cori Carl
As Director, Cori is an active member of the community and regularly creates resources for people providing care.

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22 Comments

  1. A lot of us DON’T know. When you see a loved one suffering if your heart is in the right place it is what motivates you to “care”. I ended up caring for 3. My dad, mom & sister all at the same time. I qave up my career 2 yrs early, I gave up a social life, I gave my time to them, as they would have me. In the midst of caring for these 3 my husband, and 3 yrs later my daughter died. I learned from my mom exactly what compassion & empathy was—-its feeling another’s pain. That’s what taught me to realize, what if it was me? Wouldn’t I want the same in return? “Do unto others as you would have them do to you” still works.

    Reply
  2. My grandmother was my 1st. Love, miss, and think of her everyday.

    Reply
  3. I have spent my life caring for family members and others. It has become my passion. Finally, in January, when I will be 51 years of age, I will get to do so on a professional level. Can’t wait!

    Reply
  4. Caregiving called on me! Someone had to step up to the plate!

    Reply
  5. Forced into it since I was little, my brother born with heart problems my dad was I’ll health and mom had to work. Being the eldest it got put on me

    Reply
  6. I learned when I was very little I used to give my grandma insulin shots

    Reply
  7. Professional? I’ve been trained by the Drs & nurses!
    It happened to me w/my husband! It’s in my marriage vows!

    Reply
  8. Ot’s not my calling. I want a life of my own

    Reply
  9. I learned hands on at 8 yrs old taking care of my mother…then grand mother..then uncle.
    Now after yrs of class room and real field training Im a cert caregiver..cert home health aide…cert CNA in four states. Plus going after EMT to give even more.

    Reply
  10. Please define ‘professional’. Is it educational training or hands-on training, or both? As for me, it’s the latter. 35+years now. No classroom training. Strictly hands-on.

    Reply
  11. I didn’t choose to be a caregiver it chose me

    Reply
  12. Caring for my parents, loved ones and friends showed me the need for quality caregiving.

    Reply
  13. The Job I was at was part time. I needed more work. My brother is disabled so knew I could do a caregivers job. Have been working as a caregiver since the start of this year. It’s hard work but rewarding know you are taking care of people when they really need it the most

    Reply
  14. I got laid off and wanted to help people but didn’t want to be a CNA in a nursing home. A friend brought up at home caregiving so I got on craigslist found a job right away spent 3 years running a household for a lady with MS who wasn’t very nice but I was on the list for other people so I got called a lot cause of my last name being at the top….. then I told my fiancé I wanted a house big enough to do host home. I have been a caregiver for five years and started Host home last September, we have a quad CP wbo lives with us and we just got another lady same age. So I can work from home and homeschool and the one lady is going to homeschool with us

    Reply
  15. My mom has dementia and I’m interested in the industry and how we can improve care options. I figured caregiving is a good place to start.

    Reply
  16. I charged a FLAT fee for services ((and overnight care/live in)) instead of per hour – it made it cheaper or more economical for all people concerned….. word got around quickly.

    Reply
  17. I needed to take on a second career, so I became a caregiver five years ago.

    Reply
  18. My mom got sick while I was a teenager and dad had to work.

    Reply
  19. I knew I had a special place in my heart for the elderly when my mom got dementia. I just knew how to be easy with her. I understood. She passed 3 years ago. I’ve been a caregiver ever since. We will all need help sooner or later, and I treat people as I want to be treated.

    Reply
  20. 30+ years ago I was kind of ‘thrust’ into the position. Mom needed help, all of my siblings moved away, so I was ‘it’. But as time went on, I realized that this was the ‘call’ on my life, and I was honored to care for Mama until she died. Since then, it’s been one client after another. I’m an independent caregiver, have never really had to ‘look’ for a client. God provides them. Never went to school for this-you CANNOT learn this stuff in a classroom-and all of my experience has been hands-on. Sometimes it feels like ‘what have I REALLY done with my life?’…and then I think back over the past 30+years, and I see that I’ve made a difference. That’s what it’s all about.

    Reply

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