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Aurora

Caretaker finds her life even more complicated



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February 18, 2014 | 03:18 PM
Dear W.C.,

I have spent my whole life being a caretaker.

My parents were older when they had me and I was an only child. I cared for my parents beginning in my late teens, as my father became disabled and my mother had to work. When I was in my 20s my father passed away.

After he died I went back to school and got my CNA license. I was able to work for several years and dreamed of one day becoming a Registered Nurse. I married and had a daughter 14 years ago. When my daughter was young I became my mother’s caretaker. She had cancer and was enduring grueling chemotherapy and several surgeries.

My job became caring for my mother for the next six years as she fought for her life. Unfortunately in the last year of my mother’s life, while lifting my mother out of the bathtub, I slipped and damaged my back.

I was in terrible pain and had to go to the emergency room. I have had several surgeries since that awful day but nothing has restored my back function.

My husband decided caring for me was too much work and responsibility. He left and has not paid any child support for months.

My mother passed away several years ago and was in debt when she died. She lost everything in the years of her illness. I had to sell her few remaining belongings just to pay for a simple funeral.

Recently my assistance was cut and this has hit my daughter and I hard. I caught the flu in December and ended up with pneumonia.

This added additional expenses as I ended up in the emergency room again.

If we could get help with our overdue rent and some food my daughter and I would be so grateful. It is just impossible for anyone with a disability and job loss to get caught up once you fall behind.

Disabled mother

Dear readers,

I receive many letters from people claiming to be disabled.

I know many truly do suffer with pain and inability to work, I see them and talk to them often.

There also are those that use certain disorders and injuries to receive disability and other assistance they are not entitled to. It is my job to find out the real from the impostors.

I paid an unplanned visit to the letter writer to see just how disabled she was. I arrived at the older apartment building that was in need of repairs. I know that many buildings are just left to deteriorate while tenants are living in them.

This was one of those buildings. I knocked on the first floor apartment door and waited for it to be answered. I heard someone shout, “Just a minute please.”

I could hear shuffling and the door was finally opened by a middle aged woman. What made her look older than her years was the use of a walker and her very frail build. I introduced myself and saw the look of embarrassment.

She said, “Oh my goodness. I am such a mess and so is my apartment.” I showed her my identification and she invited me inside.

I told her, “I am here to see what you need for help, not judge your appearance. You and the apartment look just fine.”

She looked relieved.

The apartment was small. There was not much of a mess for her to worry about as they did not have many belongings.

The mother introduced me to the daughter who seemed very protective of the mother. The daughter asked me several questions before she was satisfied that I was really there to help.

I complimented her on her being inquisitive.

The mother said, “She has had to learn to be my caretaker and watch over both of us. I am very proud of her.”

With that said the daughter hugged her mother and kissed her cheek.

The mother had tears in her eyes as she hugged her daughter in return.

The daughter stayed to talk with us as we went over their situation. I could see the daughter had taken on quite a lot of responsibility for her age.

The mother told me how she had cared for her after her last back surgery and her recent bout with pneumonia.

I asked about other relatives or people that could help, but there were none. The two seemed to be not only mother and daughter, but also best friends.

After talking about the mothers obvious disability and surgeries we began to go over their budget and financial problems.

The recent cuts to her disability, compounded by her recent emergency room trip and medications, along with a car repair they had neglected to mention in their letter, left them on the verge of eviction and behind in their utilities.

I now knew for sure there was a real need for The Time Is Now to Help to help these struggling fellow creations. The mother had tears in her eyes as we went over each bill.

She cried when I put together a list of what we together would help them with. The daughter tried to console her mother, but soon they were crying together. They had always relied on each other and never had received help from anyone else in this world, a very lonely place to be with no one to turn to for help.

I told them about all of you, making our mission of help possible. We paid for their past due rent and one month ahead. We brought their utilities up to date and paid for two months ahead.

We repaired their car and did a complete safety check, which revealed additional repairs were needed, including new tires to provide good traction on the snowy roads.

We filled their cupboards and refrigerator with good food. We set their budget on track to be self-sufficient again. I even called the landlord to have a few desperately needed repairs done to the building they were living in. He acknowledged not having checked the property himself for some time and that he would address the problems. I will never forget the hugs, and tears of relief, this mother and daughter shared with each other when we were done providing this assistance.

My dear readers and friends what we do together is so special. Helping our fellow creations, our caring and sharing, doing our good works, is life changing for those we help.

Health and happiness,

God bless everyone,

W.C./SaL

Fox Charities New Year $25,000 Matching Grant

Fox Charities has once again graciously stepped up to match your donation dollar for dollar, doubling your help to those in need. Please take advantage of this opportunity to double your caring and sharing.

Donations

Make checks payable to:

The Time Is Now to Help

P.O. Box 1

Lake Geneva, WI 53147

The Time Is Now to Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing how your donation provided assistance for the poverty stricken.

Upcoming event

Night of Love Wine Dinner 5 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 23, 2014, at Geneva National Clubhouse.

Presented by local chefs from the American Culinary Federation Geneva Lakes Chapter benefiting The Time Is Now To Help and ACF-GLC Education and Programs. 5-course dinner with wine pairings.

Sal will be there to share the good works we are doing to make a difference.

Please visit www. http://acfwisconsin.org/nol.htm to purchase tickets. For questions call (262) 903-8162.

Thanks

Fox Charities, Richard H. Driehaus Charitable Lead Trust, Dick and Jean Honeyager, Paul Ziegler, Ziegler Charitable Foundation, The Summertime Foundation, Kunes’ Country Stateline Superstore, Unilock Chicago, Grunow Family, Thomas and Mary Johnson, Clarence and Marilyn Schawk, Mr. and Mrs. Fred Lawton, Peter and Anna Vanderveld, Terri and Rudy Sundberg Family, Gregory L. and Jean Marie Dexter, Dr. Robert Conlon, Lake Geneva Oral and Maxillofacial Surgery, Martin Group, John Stensland and Family, Badger Precision Spring, Talmer Bank, Bonnie Glennon, Aurora Health Care Partnership Campaign, Shannon Hahn, Heidi Hall, Mary Cucchi, Rebecca Hanson, Shawna Kneipper, Gene Krauklis, Judith Mackessy, Jeanne McDonald, Michael Glass, Carole May, William and Dorothy Tookey, Sidney and Patty Johnson, Gerald and Marilyn Wilkin, Rosemarie Reiherzer, Julie Ann Muth, Karin Collamore, Gregory Swanson, Stephen Ahlgren, Robin Bender, Edward Paredes, Dusty Hudgins, Lauren Asplund, Mike and Kim Olsen, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, and all the God-loving volunteers of all our caring pantries, all of you who support The Time Is Now to Help donation boxes, and the businesses that allow our donation boxes.

Anyone who would like a Time Is Now donation box in your business, please call (262) 249-7000.



Memorials

Donna Veith in memory of her husband Michael Veith.

Furniture donations

Please contact Love Inc. for all your furniture, clothing and household item donations. Call (262) 763-2743 or (262) 763-6226 to schedule pick-up. We are no longer affiliated with Chris Ann’s Resale Shop.

The W.C. Food Pantry is desperately in need of 1,000 square feet-plus donated storage space in Lake Geneva, Elkhorn or Delavan.

An overhead door is necessary. It can be heated or unheated.

A loading dock would be a huge plus. The W.C. Food Pantry is working hard to provide good food along with other items such as pet food, toiletries and other desperately needed daily necessities. All this requires the space to store these items when donated in large quantities.

Please contact Jim Drescher at (262) 745-6018 if you can help the food pantry.

Please visit

www.timeisnowtohelp.org

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