Tuesday, July 8, 2014

A Plea for Help

It's hard to find the energy to stay upbeat, to keep believing that it will be okay because in reality it won't.
I know all about the power of positive thinking, of believing that better things will come along. I know all about having faith and believing in miracles. However, I also know about reality.
The reality of the matter is that I have a very serious disease. I have two of them in fact. My heart has undergone tremendous strain in recent years and it continues to be strained due to the micro vessel damage and the high blood pressure in my physical heart.
These two factors are causing more damage to my heart than a month full of rib eye steaks cooked in bacon fat EVER could. These two issues are factors that doctors cannot control.
They are trying though, I am in contact with my heart doctor ever few days, my blood pressure is monitored and I have tests scheduled all the time. I always have to make up hours at work because I had to leave for a doctor's appointment.
However, the fact is that micro vessel damage cannot be changed; it cannot be fixed with medications, diet or exercise. There is no surgery that will make it go away. The damage to the micro vessels is causing me extreme exhaustion, trouble breathing, difficulty walking, and water retention in just about every part of my body.
I wake up every day feeling like I never slept. I go to bed at night feeling as if a truck ran over me. I have no energy to do anything and when I do find the energy to do something, the few days afterwards are unbearable because I am in pain.

I cannot explain what my life is like anymore. In a mere six months I went from managing it and it being somewhat tolerable to everyday being a struggle. Finding the will to keep pushing at work, to take care of my household, to do things for other people takes every ounce of whatever reserves I have left.

I am running on empty here. My physical and emotional tanks are empty. My finances are a mess because I cannot keep up with the medical costs and the costs of everyday living.

My body feels trashed. I don't know how much longer I can keep going like this. That is the simple truth. I feel so terrible that there isn't much anymore that makes me smile or feel good. I hug my daughter every night, I sit with her and read or watch TV and I feel grateful that I can still do that. However, when I lie down in bed at night and feel the tightness in my chest and the pain in my legs I wonder "How much longer do I have?"
I cannot help but be concerned for what happens to her when I am gone? I cannot help but think about my husband Jeff and whether he will know what to do? Will he know how to get insurance for both of them? Will he know to call my employer and see if there is Cobra coverage when the insured spouse dies? I imagine that's something I can do ahead of time but then how do I tell him that he has to do these things? He has to be strong and take care of Grace and do all the things that I do?

Will he know that she can only use sensitive skin laundry detergent and that her clothes get air dried so they don't shrink because I cannot afford to buy her new ones? Will he realize that she needs the allergy shots that I take her for every week; that he must make sure he has insurance coverage for her so she can continue treatment? Will he know to test her blood sugar every month or so just to spot check her numbers?
What about grocery shopping? Does he know how much she likes to pick out the cookies and that she knows exactly how much money we can spend on cookies each week? Will he know that if he gets their prescriptions at Meijer, they are part of a system that gives you $10 coupons to the store for every 5 Rx's you fill? Grace uses certain soaps and shampoos because he skin is so sensitive, will he realize that they are expensive and I have to plan when I buy them using coupons and sales, sometimes buying them a month before she may actually need them just because I can save $3 on them?

I know these seem like really silly things, that of course he will be able to figure most of these out. He's a terrific father, he's extremely intelligent and if he forgets to buy the right soap and she gets a rash, he will figure out how to manage it...

When you are faced with a body that is sick, a body that doesn’t work like it used and a brain that is slowing down from the constant pain and worry, those little things that you still manage to do for your husband and daughter really matter to you. The fact that I can still do the grocery shopping, manage the insurance and medical issues and hug Grace at night means so much to me because basically it's all I really have left.

I am beyond walking around the zoo all day, I can no longer run after Grace at the park, hanging out at the mall and window shopping is far out of my scope right now and forget going to a museum, I'm not sure I'd survive the hassle of getting downtown. Each day it gets harder and harder for me to manage...

Inside myself I feel physically destroyed. The last two weeks have been especially difficult and literally each day I feel worse than I did the day before.

I am asking for your help because I truly need it. I need to clear up these medical bills not only for my continued care so that I can keep seeing my heart doctors but also so my mind is free, so that I can have a few less worries clogging up my brain and possibly enjoy what I have left with my family and friends.

For those of that have already helped, you have made a dent in my fight. You have helped pay several doctors bills and allowed me to buy insulin last month. I thank you for being there for me, for reading my story, for being my family and helping me, Jeff & Grace to continue forward in our journey.

Please share this with those around you. Perhaps, someone out there has been in a similar spot and had someone help them and now they would like to help others.

As always, Live, Laugh, Love! 

Natalie Helberg's You Caring Fundraising Link: https://www.youcaring.com/medical-fundraiser/live-laugh-love/193076

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