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Dalmicia Contreras

July 2021

Dalmicia Contreras

My Life as a Certified Nurse’s Assistant

When I was first approached about writing this expose on my life as a Certified Nursing Assistant, I admit that I originally thought it would be a simple task. My mind instantly went to an itinerary of all the duties that I complete in a day as a professional caregiver.
I start the day by assisting my client with daily living activities such as helping them get out of bed, bathed, and dressed for the day. After this initial completion of duties, I help to prepare breakfast. I enjoy assisting the client in eating. The companionship that we share over a shared meal warms my soul. I continue the day with light housekeeping such as dishes, laundry, changing bed linens, and tidying up the common areas of the home. From time to time, I have additional duties such as driving the clients to areas outside of the home to household tasks such as grocery shopping or to physician’s appointments. Our day is broken up into mealtimes and snacks in between.

Not everyone realizes that a CNA provides a great support to our clients. We may be the only person who visits or comes to help that day. We are generally the first line of support when it comes to being able to stay independent in their own home with our assistance as family members may be working or not live close enough to help. We provide companionship throughout the day as the professional relationship does develop into an informal friendship over time. Our clients must learn to trust us in their home and in their lives.

There are also experiences where the client or client’s partner of sometimes more than 50 years are still in the home, but is unaware of their partner because of dementia causing the partner who is well to feel very isolated. I am there to help with that. I am there to help comfort both members and to ensure them that they are safe.

My professional life may seem simple to some, but it has the largest rewards. With each passing day, I make a difference in the life of someone who needs help and I was able to provide that for them. I assist in providing independence with dignity to others. It is a gift to me to be able to do this.