My journey into care-giving began over 30 years ago when friends asked me to help them take care of their mother who had end stage Alzheimer’s and was not expected to live for much longer. We knew virtually nothing about how to care for her nor of any possible resources available to us. Though we spent only a couple of weeks, we did our best to make her last days as comfortable as possible. Looking back, I’m sure that those days were harder and more frustrating than they needed to be.
Soon, another friend asked for help with her husband who was dying of cancer, that lead to yet another person needing help…and then another… and then even more.
My deep immersion into caregiving came when my young family and I went to Mexico to serve for about 18 months at an orphanage for handicapped children as houseparents.
Once back in the states, knowing that I knew how to care for very needy children, we spent the next ten years being foster parents for severely disabled kids. We adopted Christopher, an 18 month old with disabilities that included autism, Duchenne muscular dystrophy, and cerebral palsy, to name just a few. He never spoke nor walked, but in his short 18 years of life, he taught me many many things.
While Christopher was alive, I worked privately as a caregiver for over ten years, attained my Certified Nursing Assistant (CNA), worked in a medical office, and began working for Coastal Home Health and Hospice where I have worked for over six years.
In my 30 years in the field, I’ve learned a lot of what can and should be done, and most importantly, the how to’s of doing them. It is my desire to pass that knowledge on to as many caring people as I can. It is for that reason that I’ve started Caregiving with Compassion.