Annie Jean Brewer - Medical Fund

$1,933 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 54 people in 27 months
Eric West
on behalf of Lynda Brewer
Hi, my name is Eric West, and I am a minimalist blogger. This GoFundMe campaign is for my friend and mentor, Annie Jean Brewer, who suffered a traumatic brain injury.

Annie Jean Brewer is a minimalist and author.  Last year she suffered a traumatic head injury that resulted in some loss of brain function.  

Read on to learn more about Annie and her current plight. 

Annie shares her frugal and minimal adventures on her blog and in a number of books she has authored through the years. 

Her minimalist lifestyle has allowed her to live off of her self-published book sales. She practices what she preaches in a very literal sense, and keeps her monthly expenses under $500 per month.  Her minimalist lifestyle has allowed her to spend more time with her daughter before she enters adulthood in a few short years. 

In 2015 she took a part time job to supplement her book income and to prevent becoming a reclusive writer. In classic Annie form, she went above and beyond, and in her time before and after work when she mentored her coworkers in frugal spending and budgeting. 

While working at this job, she suffered a traumatic head injury, which has resulted in some loss of brain function.  The is a tragic turn of events for someone who is so giving.  

Due to the brain injury, Annie has been unable to work and unable to write.  Self-published authors rely on creating new books to sustain their level of income.  Since Annie is unable to write, her book and blog income is gradually decreasing. 

She needs our help to make it through this tough period until she is able to get disability income and/or recover to a point where she can begin writing again. 

Her frugal and minimalist nature will allow her to stretch your donation to the maximum extent. She will use any money donated to pay for necessary expenses, including housing, food, and medical.

Annie is not one to ask for help. I asked her if I could help, and even then she was hesitant to accept. She prefers to tough it out, and do things herself. She would rather give to others than accept help for herself.

Annie has been a constant source of inspiration to me as I downsized and moved along a path towards minimalism. Her giving nature inspires me to be a better person and give more, while her minimalism inspires me to focus more on people, relationships, and activities rather than physical items and status symbols.

I want to end with a couple of examples of who Annie is. A few years ago when Annie decided to move back to her hometown, she owned a mobile home. This mobile home wasn’t worth a fortune, maybe a few thousand dollars. But instead of selling it, she chose to give it to someone that was in a tough situation and needed a home. That is classic Annie, giving to others when it counts.

Another example is when her cousin needed an operation, which required her head be shaved. Annie showed her love and support by shaving her own head to match. I can’t think of a more genuine and loving way to support a loved one in such a situation.

Now it’s our turn to show our support. Please help Annie cover her living expenses and medical bills during this difficult time.
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Some of you may have read this on Annie's blog, but I wanted to share here also for anyone that missed it. The following was shared by Katie, Annie's daughter.

"It’s been a while so Mom asked me to give you an update. We’re still alive.

Mom had a meltdown the other day over finances because we’ve never had it this bad before. To say we’re behind on everything would be an understatement. I’m trying to get a job after school to help but no one has called yet. We found some places to apply for loans, so hopefully it will all work out before we end up homeless.

Anyway, I just wanted to tell you that we’re still fighting. I’ll try to write some more when I get the time."
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Annie shared an update on her blog and I want to share it here as well.

I wanted to thank you again for your generous help with my expenses right now. Of all things, I never expected Eric to set up this page, or for you guys to be so generous.

I hadn’t told anyone but due to the long winter (we still need heat even today cause it is chilly), my electric was in danger of being shut off. Now it is not, all thanks to you.

I have no words to tell you how relieved I am, and how much I appreciate the help.

I look forward to telling you guys everything about what I am facing, and I am sorry that right now I can’t. As soon as they say I can though I will start sharing again but please be patient. Not only do legal things have to be sorted, it takes ages to work these things up anymore. I can only tolerate short spells in front of screens and need help getting my scratches translated and online.

But I will not quit.

That said, thank you. You have taken huge worry off my mind while I get things sorted.
Eric here... Your donations are making a difference! Thank you to each and every one of you that donated and/or shared the gofundme page on social media.

I'm slowly working through thank-you emails. If you donated at a level that includes coaching, you can book your first hour in my coaching calendar here:

Please continue to share the gofundme page so we can continue to help Annie get through this difficult phase in her life.
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I am amazed at the generosity of those that have donated. Thank you to all that have donated. I know many of you have also shared this GoFundMe campaign on blogs, Facebook, and other social media. Thank you for helping to spread the word.

I want to take a minute to share some of Annie’s background. The following information is from her blog, and summarized to highlight the kind of person Annie is, and to demonstrate the obstacles she has overcome in life to get to a point where she was able to give back and inspire others. I encourage you to take the time to read this so you can believe in her like I do.

“I come from the wrong side of the proverbial railroad tracks, the daughter of an ex-con and a dancer, raised in the shadows of the Appalachian mountains of Eastern Kentucky.”

“I was taught to cuss, shoot and play cards with the best of them as I helped my father bootleg and run a weekend card game to supplement our income after he lost his leg in an accident."

"By the time I was 18 Father was dead from cancer; by the time I was 19 I was pregnant with my first child. By 22 I had child #2 by the man I would eventually marry and saw my mother dead in a car accident.”

“By this point in my life I hated myself; I was an unwed mother 2x over, considered by many to be a slut and a whore (including myself). After Mother died things became steadily worse."

"There was still a little fight inside of me and among other things I attempted college twice, the Army once and a whole slew of get-rich-quick schemes. I enjoyed writing so I would submit short story after short story to any magazine I thought may read it. I received a ream of rejection slips and finally decided that not only was I a failure in life but a failure in chasing my dreams as well.”

“I eventually married the father of my second child, which (while the proper thing to do) was definitely NOT the smartest thing I’ve ever done. Let’s just say I spent the next several years walking on eggshells in an attempt to avoid his wrath.”

Annie’s husband was very abusive. At one point, as she was lying in bed for days recovering from his attentions, he told her that she would never get away and live to tell the tale.

“Constantly berated by spouse, family and friends I literally wanted to die. When I found myself seriously considering this possibility I KNEW it was time to change. I knew I had to get out."

Annie applied herself to creating some sort of income. She started out trying work from home gigs and multi-level marketing. Those didn’t pan out, but she continued to look for income opportunities.

“My salvation came in the form of two registered Cocker Spaniels that were given to me in the local Wal Mart parking lot. I spent most of what money I had that night on dog food and took those pups home to learn how to breed those critters and make money.”

Certainly unusual but she was able to take the profits made from dog breeding to purchase an old 10x50 mobile home.

“When I finally convinced my husband to take a job over the road I moved the kids (now 3 of them) into that tumbledown hovel and dug in for the fight of my life.”

“Freed of my marital chains, I attended computer repair school and graduated with ease. I found myself working full time at a restaurant by day with my evenings split between computer and cleaning jobs.”

“I supplemented my high-school education with books borrowed from the local library and even gained a love for classical music and literature. I even reigned in my tongue and gained control over my horribly foul language!”

Annie had done what everyone told her was impossible. She survived a rough childhood, escaped an abusive marriage, moved into her own place, and learned skills to create an income.

After she was safe, and earning an income, she reassessed her values and lifestyle. She found that if you have less stuff, life gets a little easier. You have less to clean and maintain, less to worry about, and you can live on less income. In realigning herself with a minimalism, she was able to follow her dream of becoming a writer, while simultaneously spending more time with her daughter.

“My monthly bills—including rent on our 1-bedroom cottage are less than $500 a month. This minimal amount has allowed me to follow my dream of becoming a writer. I spend my days writing books and blog posts, and crafting tutorials.”

“I am proud of the fact that I do not need a boyfriend to support me. This frees me to look at men as men instead of as financial lifelines. I have learned something very valuable and I hope to pass it on through my blog and books: you will succeed if you keep trying.”

“If you keep working, if you keep looking, if you keep searching the answers will come. If you don’t limit yourself, your answers may come from the most unexpected places (like a couple of dogs in a Wal Mart parking lot).”

“If you keep looking, total strangers will give you clues to help you along. I once had a computer repair client press a book in my hands that entirely changed my life—and I thought she was nuts when she did it!”

“The only true failure in life is if you STOP trying.”

“These are my journeys; be they good, bad or ugly. This is who I am. I achieved my dream of becoming a writer and a stay-at-home mom and I KNOW that you can achieve anything you desire if you only focus and keep trying.”

“I want you to know that if I can do it; the backwards country girl whom everyone said was destined to fail—if I can do it, I KNOW you can too! I want you to see my success and share yours every step of the way.”

Annie has overcome adversity at many points in her life, and came out stronger for it. Then, on top of it all, she shares each and every lesson she learned with readers around the world through her blog and her books.

Before I wrap up this story about Annie’s life, I want to share a couple of questions/thoughts that may arise.

Some of you may be thinking, “If Annie worked a regular full time job, she might be more financially stable and not need our help her now.” The simple fact is the majority of Americans would not be able to afford a minor emergency and would have to pay with a credit card. Imagine how most would deal with a major medical issue resulting in a complete inability to work.

In Annie’s case, the income stream she created through writing, continues to provide her with some income, even several months after she was injured. Combining that recurring income stream with a low cost of living has meant that Annie has been able to make ends meet for some time, despite her injuries. Over time, however, that income does slowly decline without new content and new blog posts to keep people interested.

Another question that comes up is, “If Annie was injured in the workplace, why isn’t her employer paying her?” The answer to this is, she can’t discuss it right now. The inference here is that she is currently in litigation, but can’t discuss it publicly.

As I said in the original GoFundMe post, we are trying to fund the “in-between.” There is often a period between the time the injury occurs and when a settlement is reached, when disability kicks in, or when one is recovered enough to return to work. This is where Annie is now, and it’s this in-between time that we want to help her with.

Again, thank you for donating and for helping to spread the word.
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Hello everyone. Thank you so much to those of you that donated! We have already funded a full 7 days of living expenses for Annie.

I'd like to reward your generosity, so anyone that donates is free to request anything bloggy of me. I can write a guest post or I can share a link to your blog, book, or product. Everyone that donates will also get a copy of my book, Set Your Sleep on Autopilot.

I'm setting up some reward levels with some suggested donation amounts.

Once again, thank you for donating and helping Annie through this tough in-between period!
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$1,933 of $10,000 goal

Raised by 54 people in 27 months
Created May 9, 2016
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Diamond Chamberlin
21 months ago

I know it's not a lot my dear sweet friend , but I hope it helps !

Maria Stenvinkel
21 months ago

Hope you get well soon! Lots of love to you.

21 months ago
21 months ago
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