Sharon Cerna, Eldercare Worker


Naydelin Lizama , Guest Contributor

Sharon is a very happy person and has a smile on her face all the time. Her smile is contagious and will brighten up a room. Her teeth uncover and you will definitely notice her eyes getting smaller and brighter. 

“She helps people in any way possible,” stated my mom, who has been her friend since I was in elementary school. Sharon was born in Usulutan, El Salvador. She went to university there and was supported and motivated by her mom and boyfriend. She loved school because she was able to make connections with other classmates and she enjoyed being able to prepare for her future the most. Sharon is very adventurous and loves to go hiking when she has time. Since most kids are now spending all day and night on their phones, Sharon has friends come hiking with their kids, so both parents and their children have fun. 

Sharon takes care of elderly people. This all started seven years ago when one of her friends wanted Sharon to cover for her by taking a woman to an appointment. She said yes, of course. Like I mentioned before, she helps others when possible. After her first experience being around elderly people, she seemed to really enjoy it and decided to help them all weekend long. 

She describes a typical day. First, she puts a smile on her face because she doesn’t want to pass off any negative energy. Then while she cooks breakfast for the person she’s taking care of for the day, she asks them for their plans ahead of time. For example, some days she goes grocery shopping for them, takes them to an appointment, or goes for a walk. Going shopping for older people during the pandemic helps keep them safe and not risk their lives. For her, this has been especially more important over this past year because she has to make sure she follows all the COVID-19 protocols in order to stay safe. 

During these past seven years, she said her biggest difficulty was “being in a grocery store with a lady that had Parkinson’s disease.” In this situation, she said she did not talk to the lady because she knew that would frustrate her even more. The lady wasn’t able to hold anything in her hands at times when she had attacks. Sharon grabbed her gently by her hand and helped her take slow and steady breaths in order for the lady to calm down. When the lady saw Sharon, she calmed down and was able to control her movements.

If Sharon would’ve not been a very helpful person, she wouldn’t have covered for her friend. This means she wouldn’t have been able to help our community with this amazing job that she does so beautifully. I believe that our community is blessed to have people like Sharon who help elders because when I think of elder people I think about them as a resource that contains knowledge. They have been around longer than us. If we have questions, we have an idea of who to ask.