I'm a child of divorce but loved both my Parents dearly. Raised by a Christian Grandmother who taught me to love everyone and have no respect of person. She ingrained in me a strong work ethic and to treat others the same way I'd want to be treated (which is why I'm so nice to my child...she may be picking out my Nursing Home LOL!).
The photo is my sweet Mom who passed at age 76 in 2011. This photo was taken while in Rehab just 4 month prior to her passing. She was a sweetheart and I'd fly anywhere just to take care of her if needed. Though my brother took very good care of her in Michigan as I was living in several places as a military wife.
My background is E.M.T. (Emergency Medical Tech). Prior to that I began an interest in the elderly at a very young age. I took a job at a Nursing Home working in the Kitchen. I got to know a ton of sweet people and knew their diets, how they liked their food, their dis-likes (and dispositions when they weren't having such a hot day). I soon left that job to be an Activity Assistant in the same facility, there I got to play games with them and just keep them busy. We love dressing up on the holidays and my favorite was New Years. We'd have a party for them (at 6, their bedtime was 8) and about 5 till 7...we began the count down to New Years, they were so funny and fun to be around. But they were very appreciative of our service.
After leaving that job in the same facility I became a C.N.A. (certified nursing assistant) that's where I learned a TON about how to care for the Elderly. It was a sad day when one of my patients passed away right after bathing her and I was in the dining room feeding others their breakfast. I got called out to help clean her again and get her ready for the Morgue. I recall the Charge Nurse saying she would help me as I gathered everything she told me too, but...I was just pacing back and forth in front of the Nurses station because I didn't want to go in and she realized that. She was so kind and said... "I'll go with you". So she helped me clean and prep her. I recall being SO nervous and at one point I turned her, bumped her head on the rail and immediately jumped said "Oh! I'm sorry!"...that was kinda dumb, but understandable I guess :-).
So not long after, I learned of private aides and so I actually left the facility to do home care. They were all very rewarding and I wouldn't trade any experience I had because I learned so much.
Now my heart just wants to give back because in my career I've seen a lot of Elderly just dropped off at the Nursing home and left. No family, no visits. I can't "save the world"....but I can play a part in helping to make it better one senior at a time.