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‘Giving up career as beauty therapist to be a carer was the best decision I made’, says Hornchurch carer

PUBLISHED: 07:00 11 September 2017

Sammy Johnson and Natalea Haydon. Picture: Ken Mears

Sammy Johnson and Natalea Haydon. Picture: Ken Mears

Archant

Inspired by the support her grandad received when living with Alzheimer’s, a beautician retrained to become a carer for Radfield Home Care Havering.

Natalea Haydon. Picture: Ken Mears Natalea Haydon. Picture: Ken Mears

Natalea Haydon, 25, didn’t know what she wanted to do when she left school and picked the “girly” option of studying to be a beauty therapist.

But when she saw how much her grandfather benefited from good care, she decided she wanted to make a difference to other people’s lives.

“I had to face the horrible reality of watching a grandparent forget how to plant his flowers, walk to the shops and get dressed in the morning,” she told the Recorder.

“My grandad was one of my best friends, he was someone that I could always cuddle up to. Seeing him not being able to remember who his family were was one of the hardest things I have ever had to deal with.

“Knowing that he was alive, but no longer with us in his mind, was heartbreaking.”

Natalea said her family spent the last few years of her grandad’s life trying to keep his day-to-day life as normal as possible.

“Grandad was lucky to have had amazing carers supporting him in between this to allow him to stay at home with my nan, where he belonged.

“Without this care team, my grandad would have had to go into a care home and spend his time away from things he enjoyed and the people he loved too soon.”

Natalea said the day she lost her grandad was the day she realised what she wanted to do with her life.

“I started my career as a carer and after only three weeks of finding my feet in the industry I knew this was going to be my future,” she explained.

“I love helping people and I go home every day feeling happy, it is so rewarding.

“I have been in the industry for nearly eight years now, after progressing through various roles and responsibilities and I can safely say, this industry is where I am staying and I urge others to join me – you won’t look back.”

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