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Andrew Got Sick

$1,755 of $20,000 goal

Raised by 12 people in 11 months
It’s always been hard for me to ask for help; I’m very independent and more often than not people are coming to me so you will imagine how difficult it has been for me to reach out.
31934216_1534201946780608_r.jpegI’ve been sick my whole life and not known it. In July of 2017 I started showing more physical signs and started seeing doctors about it because it was something that was getting worse and I couldn’t handle it myself. At first I thought it was the residual stress of a one-sided divorce that left me broke and confused but as the pain of a baseball sized undiagnosed brain tumour reared it’s head and it became apparent that I was close to dying, at Christmas time I rushed in for surgery and spent about 6 weeks trying to recover. The damage done was significant, my left eye has been crushed due to the pressure in my head and as a result I can’t read, watch television or play video games for very long without getting a headache because my eyes won’t work together. The left half of my body is clumsy now and my only enjoyable pastime is playing guitar. I’m only a third as technically proficient as I was before the surgery and I guess I am happy that I can still play since I’ve been doing it for about 25 years. I went back to work in February of 2018 and was robbed of some of my audio tools which basically shut down my home business which was primarily editing and restoring audio. Since then I have dropped nearly 70 pounds which is unforeseen and something I am keeping an eye on. It’s pretty terrifying considering how much I eat and try to gain weight that it is still slowly going down.
31934216_1534201975693320_r.jpegThe good news is that I am still able to work, although I am losing vision in my left eye at an alarming pace and might not be able to fix it - I’ll hopefully find out what my chances are for some vision correction on August 31. If I lose my vision I won’t be able to drive to my current job and will try to find something more local. Honestly the idea of going on a Disability claim sounds like a prison term to me.
31934216_1534202004825981_r.jpegI see my collection of doctors and specialists fairly regularly and since I am asking for help, it’s only fair that I am honest and open about it. If you have questions about my illnesses or limitations, feel free to ask and if I can’t answer it I will be sure to get an answer from a medical professional when I go in for my regular visits.
31934216_1534202065117808_r.jpegThe bad news is that I am going to get sick again. Likely not for a number of years but I don’t want to sit around and hope that there will be a miracle cure for my condition in the future. I would like to follow through with my dream of eventually having a place to set up my audio equipment again and rebuilding my clientele, and doing what I can to live a normal and productive life despite the rough circumstances I’m going through. Unfortunately my divorce, being robbed, and being sick have left me in a bit of a hole and I need help out.
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I had my first full on mental breakdown a few weeks back. So incredibly overwhelmed with the way things never stay true to plan, little things turn into big things, and though I work a full time job and more on the side, I am not getting ahead. I'm no longer falling behind, but I am definitely not making much if any progress towards my goals and dreams. Unfortunately in my panic I pushed everyone away and made it worse for myself, but part of the problem felt like nobody was there for me when I asked for help. I could do nothing right and everyone was quick to let me know. And then out of nowhere one of my best friends (Oreo, one of my cats) got sick and nearly died!

Sometimes, people just need someone to listen. To be heard, it doesn't always have to be a discussion. If no questions are asked, maybe it isn't the right time to offer opinions :/ I just needed to let it out and I kept it inside.

Unfortunately but fortunately I am over it. Unfortunately because I did it alone, fortunate that it is over. I've got a new plan and it started out by coming to terms with what was actually making me so depressed. Here's the short list:

Where I live, with no privacy
I work too much and have no life
I save all my money because I know I'm going to get sick again, and I'm gonna need it :(
I don't do things for myself, I always say yes to everyone else though

First thing is first, trying really hard to find a place to live that is affordable enough to let me continue saving a little each month. It's frustrating because everything is so expensive, and there are no social assistance programs for white guys down on their luck, unless I either don't work or have a child... neither of which is an option obviously.

I'm still gonna work too much because that's the only way to stay afloat and keep my mind occupied.

I need to spend SOME money on fun. Every week I have a video game night that runs about $40 for beer and pizza with a good friend of mine, but I want to do other stuff. Mini golf, road trips, fine dining occasionally. Maybe find a hot date somewhere ;)

Gotta say no to people sometimes. People are so used to me saying yes that when I say no they get upset and I feel bad.

I have been going through the steps, seeing a physiotherapist for my broken body and a counselor for my emotions. I hate to say it but sometimes I miss the old brain tumour days of only having a few emotions and not having to learn these new skills.
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Wow. Well, all of my life I've been told that I should do this or that, be nice to others, don't do drugs, don't smoke, work hard. The same stuff that everyone else hears. The difference? I listened. Or at least, I did my damn best. It's true, I had a pretty bad anger issue most of my life, and I said some things and hurt some people. It is very unfortunate, and although I can't change it, I feel remorse. It doesn't make it more acceptable that I had a pretty "impressive" brain tumour, but it's the reason. And I'm definitely paying for it now.

But on the flip side, I have never done drugs, never smoked a cigarette, don't eat sugar, live a healthy lifestyle and am the sickest person I know. Sure, I have days where things seem normal. I also have crippling headaches caused by neck and back pain that I can't afford to deal with. Rising fuel prices are stressing me out, and I was just scraping by before the cost went up.

Something happened today. I'm having a hard time dealing with it, and I think it's going to cost me some of the people in my life but in the end I've got to stop looking out for everyone else. It's wrecking me. I try so hard to maintain one-sided friendships, and I've done it most of my life. For once, I am in need and accepting of help (I've been known to be a little stubborn when it comes to asking for it) and what I am finding is that people won't leave the past where it is. I've got my close circle of good friends and that is all I need. I'm done with the users.
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I had a dream where I caught a break.

Only a dream :/

I had another MRI last Wednesday, and then had to go meet with the doctor sooner than I was scheduled to. I had switched my MRIs from every 3 months to every 4; this was the first one since the switch, and now I have to swap back to every 3 months or possibly even more frequently. Turns out there is a something on the scan again, but 4 out of 5 doctors agree that nothing has changed since the last time. One of them says it's different and they think that perhaps he is measuring if at a different angle than before and therefore getting a different result. But either way it means that I am stressing out about it again.

We also talked about the carpet cleaner that fell down the stairs and I caught with my face. We discussed what's been going on with me and he says it's definitely the telltale symptoms of a concussion, but since it happened over a month ago there's no way to be sure if it is or was.

Finally we had a conversation about my depression and he says I will receive a letter shortly from his office making sure that if I need to go to some sort of counselling or whatnot, the government will pay for it since it is very common after suffering through hardship of any sort but adding on a brain trauma like I had seals the deal, making it something that will fall under the medical plan.

There was some good of course - my nephew came to BC and showed up short notice, we had some good hang out and catch up time (haven't seen him in 4 years or so) and we went to Bin4, the burger lounge in Victoria. He bought a guitar and I am filming some guitar lessons for him.
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Damn I have never had a bout of depression so bad in my whole life. I had a job that seemed like a sure thing lined up. Many interviews and even some testing was done only to not get it. Truth be told it was a "normal" job, which I am happy with the idea of - I do enough audio on the side that a regular job would actually leave me more time to do my own thing. It would have also afforded me the opportunity to get out of where I live currently as that situation is either going downhill or I just can't handle it anymore - not entirely sure. Although the owner of the place keeps doing little upgrades and I'm sure the end goal is to sell it. I have agreed to do another show at my regular-ish theatre gig, but that means another summer of awful days off, working all the daylight hours away in a building with no windows. It didn't used to get to me so much but I'm more social now since the surgery. I need my friends and I feel so alone all the time.

There's a group in Nanaimo that I discovered called the "Nanaimo Brain Injury Society" that does regular meetings - of course on days I can't make due to the theatre's schedule. Seems like something that might be beneficial so I am going to try to make a few meetings before I start back up at the theatre mid May.

Honestly I think that I have had enough - ENOUGH - of this "bad luck" if you want to call it that, and just need a CHANCE. Someone needs to put their faith in me, because despite the annoying rumours being spread I am a capable and talented person. I have a sharp mind despite what I went through. Someone recently told me that I was courageous to face the surgery like that. I think it was Mark Twain who said something like courage is the mastery of fear. I think I just faked it.
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Raised by 12 people in 11 months
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