In addition to our Valentine’s-themed Caregiver of the Month of February , The Caregiver’s Voice is featuring several other family and professional caregivers as inspirational examples.
We start with Lisa DeMello, a caregiver for Home Instead Senior Care in North Dartmouth, Massachusetts.
During Lisa’s two years at Home Instead, she has worked with clients living with dementia/Alzheimer’s.
“No matter how stressful, frustrating or demanding the client can be, Lisa always remains, calm, cheerful, and never makes the client feel bad about his/her illness,” says Home Instead franchise owner, Sailynn Doyle.
“One day, a male client in his eighties whose dementia is progressing very rapidly, was very agitated and said to Lisa, ‘I want to get a job.’ The average person [grounded in reality may] have explained to him that was not possible due to ____. Lisa took a calm approach, ‘Okay, Mr. F, why don’t you get the newspaper and we will look.’ As they spent the next few hours reading the paper, discussing jobs, and circling things he thought he could do, Mr. F remained calm and had a positive day.”
“In another instance, Lisa was working with a ninety-three year old woman with dementia who during the night got up and was very upset because she thought her dog needed to go out. (The woman does not have a dog.) At two o’clock in the morning, Lisa got up, helped the woman walk downstairs, and the two of them let the [imaginary] dog out. Lisa reassured her client that the dog could stay out and that in the morning they would let the dog back in. The woman went back to bed and slept soundly after feeling reassured her dog was fine.”
“Lisa is an exceptional caregiver and we wish we could have a hundred like her. Lisa takes extra steps to show her clients with dementia/Alzheimer’s unconditional love through her patience, understanding, and compassion.”