The Time is Now to Help
Daughter finds father in desperate situation
June 16, 2010 | 07:47 AM
I am writing to ask for help for my father. He is a widowed senior citizen. I live out of state and just came to the area to visit him. I found him living in a rundown mobile home with no utilities. His car is broke down. He has health problems that he says use up a lot of his income from Social Security. He never told me how badly he was doing.
I am a single mother and unable to help him at this time. I have my own financial struggles and this is why I haven't been able to even visit for several years. The last time we talked he said his phone was being disconnected and we would have to write letters from now on. I asked him how he was doing financially and all he would say was fine. I know he didn't want me worrying about him but now that I have visited I am more worried than ever. When I was looking through a newspaper I came across your organization, The Time Is Now To Help. Can you please help my father?
After a visit to this senior gentleman's mobile home I was as worried as the daughter. After several knocks a frail looking older man opened the door. He asked who I was. When I introduced myself he knew who I was because his daughter had told him she had written a letter to me. He invited me inside. I found him living in a dark mobile home with no refrigerator, lights, or electricity. The only food available was some crackers and peanut butter. I noticed several prescription bottles on the counter tops. He explained he had a heart condition and high blood pressure. He said his doctor told him he would die if he did not take his medications.
I could see he was feeling weak. Because it was dim and quite warm inside he said, "Let's sit outside and talk." He had two old metal chairs outside we sat in as he told me, "When my wife was still alive we would sit outside together in these chairs." I asked him how long it had been since his wife passed away. He told me it had been more than five years. He said that was the last time his daughter had been to visit as well. He said, "She hasn't seen how I've been living and I sure didn't tell her. She has enough to worry about in her own life."
He went on to tell me how his daughter lived far away and worked long hours. "She's raising her two kids all on her own, with no help from her no account ex-husband. I couldn't ask her to come help me with my problems." I told him how worried his daughter was to leave him living in the conditions he was enduring. He looked ashamed to even talk about it. I asked him how long his utilities had been disconnected and he said since April. He said his prescription medications took most of his income and he was afraid to go without them. I assured him we would find a way for him to afford food, rent, utilities and his medications.
It was getting dark but I couldn't leave this elderly man without making sure he had some food to eat. I told him I would be right back and went to get him some hot food. When I came back in a short while with chicken, mashed potatoes and coleslaw he seemed to be the happiest man on the planet. His hands were shaking from overwhelming hunger and excitement to have a hot meal. He lit a candle so he could finish his meal in the dark trailer. I asked him to relocate to another location until the utilities could be turned back on. He said, "No thank you. I'm not leaving. This is my home." I looked around the dark trailer as he reassured me, "Please, I'm OK here. Besides, I feel much better after that great meal." He smiled for the first time of our visit. I smiled back and told him I would come back in the morning to talk again.
The next day I arrived with a warm breakfast. He again was so grateful for the simple kindness of a meal. Unless you have done without a refrigerator and stove you cannot know how important those appliances are. You are stuck eating crackers, tuna, and peanut butter, anything that does not spoil or need cooking. After he was through eating we went over his finances. He had applied for some assistance but was on a long waiting list. He had not signed up for Meals on Wheels because he was afraid for anyone to see he was living without utilities. He knew he would be evicted if he could not keep them on.
I had to ask him about the possibility of moving in with his daughter. He immediately said, "Oh no. I could never be a burden to her like that." I assured him that the daughter I spoke to on the phone was a loving concerned daughter. She had not sounded like he was a burden to her other than her constant worry over his well being. He agreed to let me call her again to ask about her housing situation. When I called her she was relieved to know I was there to help her father. She admitted she was struggling to pay her rent even while working full time. Her two children were about to become teenagers and she said food was a major expense for them. She made a home cooked meal for them every day because she wanted them to eat right.
I asked her to be 100 percent honest with me if I asked her a personal question. She said she would be. I asked if she would be open to the idea of her father moving in with her. I could hear a few sniffles over the phone, then she said, "I have been waiting for my father to quit being so stubborn and just ask. If I ask him he always says no, he doesn't want to be a burden. I always assure him he will not be a burden but he won't listen to reason. I would be happy to have my father live here with me. He would be a tremendous help with my boys and we could share rent." I asked her to repeat that as I put my speakerphone on so her father could hear it for himself.
I told the daughter I would speak to father and see how he felt about it. After we hung up I noticed the father had tears in his eyes. He hung his head and said, "I didn't know she was serious about me living with her. I thought she was just doing what she thought she had to do. I didn't know she really wanted me or even needed me to live with her." All this gentleman needed was to feel needed and wanted. We immediately began talking about the possibilities.
After several weeks all the arrangements were made and our senior was on his way to live with his daughter. I had moved him into a local motel until all his belongings were packed and moved. He was much more comfortable with all his basic needs being met. His daughter and grandsons came to pick him up and we finally met. As his grandson's ran up to hug him I could see the man trembling as he hugged them back, crying. It was a reunion of love. The daughter hugged her father and thanked The Time Is Now To Help profusely for our kind care of her father. The Time Is Now To Help provided the struggling daughter with some gas and food vouchers and a bag of drinks and sandwiches to see her family safely back to their home. They were all very grateful for our help.
There have always been a few that doubt what The Time Is Now To Help and other organizations do to help our fellow American's in need. Do we perpetuate laziness? Do we assist those not really in need? We do everything we can to screen our recipients. I am not out to solve all the world's wrongs, no matter how much I would like to. I am just trying to offer a helping hand to many senior citizens, children, handicapped, and good fellow creations that struggling in desperation and in the pains of poverty. Are there going to be those that try to take advantage? Yes. Are there people living on assistance that truly do not need it? Yes. Does that mean I should stop trying to help those in desperate need? No.
I ask all those that judge to walk a mile in any one of our recipient's shoes and then pass judgment. It is easy to be critical and uncaring. The hard part is caring and then actually doing something about it. Instead of wasting energy casting stones at our fellow creation, see what you can do to improve the lives of those around you.
Thank you for Caring and Sharing for our fellow American's.
Together we make a big difference helping our fellow creations of God.
Health & Happiness, God Bless Everyone, W.C.
Please Help: Make checks payable to: The Time Is Now To Help, P.O. Box 70, Pell Lake, WI 53157. The Time Is Now to Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in the states of Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing exactly what every penny of your donation provided for the poverty stricken.
A Very Special Thank You: Badger FFA, Teacher Tom Sheeley and students of the Badger High School Automotive class, Margarie Egger, Nancy Kauffman & Cheryl Kowalski, Donald & Gladys Keith, Wesley & Stacy Heiar, Jerome & Susan Kuta, Michael Burke, Ronald & Desiree Lipowski, Michael Glass, Gerald & Kathryn Hartlaub, Richard & Janice Ploch, William & Jean Isaacson, Martin O'Brien, Pam Maynard, William & Kimberly Basford, Robert & Shirley Lipinski, James & Marilynn Dyer, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, 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.
We Desperately Need Cars: Please donate a used car to help our fellow American's get to work and other daily necessities.
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Please visit: www.timeisnowtohelp.org.