Help Laura FIGHT and Get Mobile!
Help Laura Fight Her
End Stage Renal Disease, Thyroid Cancer, Advanced Diabetes, Chronic Pain and Let's Get Her Mobile!
Hello, my name is Matthew Raynor. I am writing to you and the entire world to tell you about my fiancee Laura Shifrin. We have been together for 17 years and I need to tell you about this amazing woman.
Over the last few years life has become very challenging and Laura and had to endure so many medical procedures, surgeries and now life saving treatments. But I am so thankful that there are these types of treatments that keep Laura alive both for her and I admit selfishly for me. I cannot imagine my life without her, but now she needs your help.
We have chosen GoFundMe to manage this fundraiser for her. You are here because someone that cares about YOU cared enough to tell you about Laura through this link. I think that the special social connection is worth looking into. It is time for you to hear about Laura and what she has been going through.
Laura and I live in Pembroke Pines, Florida. We met in 2001 through a friend of a friend. She is so sweet and kind to everyone that she meets. She makes everyone her feel like they are her concern. She cares for and about all people. I hope that you will get a chance to meet her, you will be all the better for it.
When I met Laura you would never have known that diabetes had been a part of her life, but she was doing everything that the doctors asked of her despite that fact that it had never been properly diagnosed. Her father had diabetes yet she had no idea that this disease was doing so much damage to her for almost twenty years before a real medical doctor diagnosed her with it. I can honestly say that she has diabetes, but diabetes does NOT have her. Laura also suffers from other diseases but she won't let them define her either. She works very hard to make our lives normal and she has taught me over the years that life is not about tangible things but how much we enjoy every minute we share together.
Laura's 35 year struggle with diabetes has like so many other people that have diabetes unfortunately grown into kidney disease. Her kidneys barely function at only 3% and the damage is permanent as per the doctors. Her diagnosis of end stage renal failure requires more than the average person on dialysis. Her doctors prescribe her 4 days of treatment with a 5 long hours on the dialysis machine. So much of that time that we could be together is taken away by this medical procedure, but it is dialysis and it allows her to live. For that I am thankful. When she made the decision to have the first surgery and live, I was so proud of her. I promised that I would be here for her always, to not only love her (which I would have anyway) but to take care of her no matter what!
Laura's kidney doctors have assured us that there are no other choices, no possibility of a transplant. Therefore she must be on dialysis for the rest of her life. I want her to have everyday with less worry and burden. She has so many things to worry about like chronic pain. She has had this awful unimaginable pain for so many years now. It is from a bad injury to her neck and back in many places. She has 11 herniated disks. This pain is so chronic that she is prescribed strong pain medication both fentanyl and oxycodone. She has been on combination of drugs since before we met and she has realized the potential danger of both drugs. She is very careful to only take the very least that she needs each day.
Clearly our country must find a better way to provide for everyone's healthcare, but until they figure this all out...Laura's medical costs are through the roof. Yes,5 insurance does cover 80%, but it is the rest that is so difficult to manage with multiple illnesses and diseases. Most of the mail is medical bills and the costs for these other things to make her life more comfortable, are ever increasing.
This is where YOU come in and every donation can collectively make a HUGE difference. Laura must find a better transportation solution that will be reliable and safe. She needs a special vehicle that can accommodate Laura's electric wheelchair. Right now, she is forced to use the public county transportation service to get back and forth. That adds at least an extra hour or more each way back and forth to her 4 day a week dialysis treatments and doctor appointments (which there are so many of). Laura takes this living thing seriously so she tries to not miss a treatment. She has been having to drive back and forth to her treatment center in her bright blue electric wheelchair when the county transportation fails to show up or when she calls in and finds out that it will not be coming on time. Sometimes the bus shows up 2 hours or later and she gets so stressed out knowing that because of dispatch errors or driver tardiness she will not get enough time on the dialysis machine. As you can imagine, her riding the wheelchair on sidewalks is fine, but the areas where she has to ride her wheelchair in the streets can be dangerous. Many of the streets do not have sidewalks in Pembroke Pines. Ultimately us raising the funds needed to buy this vehicle will assure her safety 100% of the time and give her the same independence that we all deserve.
So first we need to raise enough money to help Laura get that vehicle that she can get into on a ramp by herself and drive herself to and from her dialysis treatments and her doctor appointments. I hope that you are now getting to know Laura and her situation. You can feel good about contributing to her fundraiser. Doing that is a GREAT THING FOR YOU TO DO. Please give from your heart to help her get this vehicle.
Laura also needs a pool lift to help her get in and out of her in-ground pool. Unfortunately her walking has become unsteady mainly due to the swelling in her lower legs. I worry about her walking just the few steps outside the back door, to and from the pool. Last year I had a special wood railing made for her from the door to the pool, but it is not enough to guarantee her safety. She needs to keep her daily exercise up in the pool to keep her body in as best a shape as she can. Clearly getting her this special piece of equipment is vital to her existence as she has to deal with continual swelling especially in the legs. The benefits of dialysis (if you are not familiar with this disease) is to remove all of the toxins and water from the body. Before dialysis she was able to do much of that herself, like all the rest of us. The fluids that she drinks are extremely limited now. Despite her cutting back, the amount of swelling is still a great source of concern. The pool exercise is safe and a great way to keep her swelling down. This pool lift will give her peace of mind when she goes out to exercise.
I am confident that this fundraiser will continue to grow and assist Laura because we have already raised over $6,000 so far with GoFundMe and the loving people who already reached out to help her in the first 4 months since we started. Because of the way that Facebook and the Internet works, as people continue to SHARE this page and donate what they can, the goal of this fundraiser will be reached. The best thing that you can do is to SHARE the link to this page with your friends, business associates and family members. Just a few personal words about why others should also give. Sharing always influences friends to act and that is what we need. Together we can make an amazing difference for Laura. Some of the money raised will go toward the money she needs to help greatly reduce Laura's huge pile of bills from four surgeries. She had three surgeries that were needed for her dialysis access and one surgery for something that I haven't told you about yet.
As if Laura's situation wasn't bad enough it really heightened this year when her endocrinologist (who she has seen for the last 15 years for diabetes care) found something unusual that he had never seen before with her thyroid. He sent her for typical tests and it was exactly what the doctor worried it might be. Malignant thyroid cancer that needed to be operated on. We sought out the very best surgeon and by the time Laura was operated on for this horrible disease just a few weeks later, one overgrown nodule had turned into the surgeon needing to remove more than 10 nodules. It also was moving fast as it had grown beyond the thyroid and required radiation in hospital without any visitors for five days. Despite the good news after the radiation treatment that all of the cancer had been removed, she was told that protocol will will require her going through the same radiation and testing every year on her anniversary date. EVERY year? Doesn't sound like she is free of the cancer, like we had hoped. But she is strong and has faith that it will all work out. So the bills keep coming in for the doctor visits, tests, injections (one shot was required before the radiation and the cost was thousands for that one shot) and more.
I KNOW that Laura has not and SHE WON'T EVER GIVE UP because she is a super strong woman and the most caring, loving person that I have ever known.
Every donation given to HELP Laura will make a difference and bring her one step closer to a more comfortable existence.
Thank you for your time,