I grew to appreciate the many things that an elder had to offer: a caring heart, a mind full of wisdom and experience, and the time to listen and talk. These four to six delightful people were my constant companions and most became my friends, as they would stay with us for years, sometimes.
My responsibilities encompassed just about everything that an elder might need as they were with me 24/7. This meant all homemaking activities, as well as, all medical and social needs. Since I only had a small relief staff, I did almost all of the "hands-on" ADL's (Activities of Daily Living) with or for them, including transfers, bathing, diapering, dressing, etc. I was chief cook, bottle washer, housekeeper, chauffeur, nurse, medication organizer and dispenser, and a shoulder to cry on. I also was their advocate and liaison with family, medical persons, and sometimes the legal system.
This experience enriched my life in so many ways, I felt as if I was born to do it and I always enjoy the opportunity to care for a senior again.