My first caring role was for my son when he was diagnosed with leukemia back in 2014. I was his full-time carer for three and a half years and then we moved to a place where he started being quite independent.
I obviously had to give up work to be his carer, so we were down to one income and then the financial stresses that came with that as well, even our daughter then had to step up. She was only nine when he got diagnosed, but she had to grow up very quickly. She was exposed to a lot of things that kids that age don’t, and she had to try and understand things that were beyond her years.
Then last year I became the carer for my mum after we almost lost her during two complications of her diabetes. Being her carer, I think will last until we get to a point where we lose her, or she goes into a home. I think it’s very confusing because it’s for someone you love, so you’d never want anyone else to do it anyway, but at the same time it takes away so much of your own life, that it can be hard. It’s also one of the most rewarding things I’ve done as well to be able to be with both of them through that, and also to be able to help both of them get to the point where they are now.
When I connected with Carers Queensland as a carer it provided me with a lot of direction, confidence and definitely a lot more clarity. I wanted to do something else and because of what I’d been exposed to in Anthony’s treatment and in the hospital, I wanted to go into that industry. So, I thought that the Certificate III in Community Services was a good steppingstone and a good place to start.
Completing the Certificate III in Community Services helped me identify that what I learned from caring for my son can actually be valuable in a workplace. I decided to apply for a job with Carers Queensland because I knew what I wanted to do regardless of what the position was. I wanted to be in that organisation through my journey in the last two years.
As an employee with Carers Queensland every week and every day and every month, my direction and my purpose has not only become a lot clearer, but I can also actually see that happening within Carers Queensland as well.