As a Candystriper many years ago, I gravitated toward the elderly. As a nursing student (I didn't not complete), I found that it was the elderly that needed that one-on-one, extra time spent, relationship. While in college, I provided home care/companion care, and have on and off for the past 35+ years. I've had a myriad of clients with different concerns and at various stages of health. I spent two days w/my father-in-law while he was in hospice, and was present at his passing, calling TOD. I enjoy doing for others, providing them w/care and companionship while allowing family members to take a much-needed break.
An "achievement" that I'm most proud of is giving a client back some semblance of pride. Though she suffered from dementia, she could still communicate and read. Her abject fear was to be alone and trapped. I made a sign that was at the foot of her bed that reminded her that she was never alone and that someone was always there. The sign had velcro dots, and each caregiver had a small sign w/their name on it that could be affixed for their shift. She was able to call us by name when she became panicked, fearing that she was alone (even though someone was always in the next room). When she sat at the dining room table eating her meal and because she didn't have the strength to push herself away from the table, she would fret that she was trapped and couldn't relax enough to enjoy her meal. I made a little tent card that had a picture of a dining table and chair, and it said "you have the power to move back from the table because we will help you". Both signs made a huge difference in her life...something so simple, yet so powerful.