Angela Shepard is organizing this fundraiser on behalf of Melissa Mills.
My dear friends Bobby and Melissa Mills and their children could really use our support!
Melissa's words: I want to share our story because we haven't been able to go on with life as usual, and for people to understand why we've kind of vanished. We're here, just taking it day by day. We also needed to let everyone know at some point that we moved and why. And we've had to ask for a lot of help recently and REALLY wanted to thank everyone and let our friends know how important family has been. To my parents Robin Beard Aguirre Michael Aguirre who opened their home to us for weeks, bought all of our groceries, hosted bbqs to try and make life normal for us and the kids, to being there for calls at all hours when I just needed to cry, to giving us a weekend away to enjoy our dear friends wedding while we were crumbling on the inside, for letting us borrow your car, for everything you've let us have and borrow to get even just some basics, for making us 11 dinners to bring to our new home, THANK YOU. To Megan Aguirre, for the prepped meals and you were there for me in so many ways, THANK YOU. To Jaimie Denton, for loaning us a few beds, making a lot of calls, and bringing over some great meals, THANK YOU. And to Sunny Keltner-Mills and Roy Mills for watching Bailey, our doggie, these last 2 weeks until we get the extra funds to put a deposit down on her to move in, THANK YOU. Shawna Friis Louder, you've always let me vent, cry, been a positive problem solver, and even went above and beyond to help with rides on Thursday when I was in the er, THANK YOU. To Angela Shepard, for giving me help starting a new wardrobe for the girls and I, and for always sending thoughtful texts when I needed them most.
I think I'm finally able to tell what's been going on with our family the last few months. It's been horrible, chaotic, beyond stressful, physically problematic, scary, depressing, and hopeless. We've tried putting on brave faces and acting as if everything is normal for some recent special events, but life has been anything BUT normal. We moved in September 2016 to a beautiful 4000+ sq ft home near our kids school. After a month, I woke to the master bedroom roof leaking next to my side of the bed from an air vent during the crazy storm season. I fought hard with the prop mgr and then the builder as the house was under warranty to have it fixed. Slowly over the next few months more and more leaks kept springing up. All of us kept in the repetitive cycle of getting a cold, going through us all, and then starting back again on repeat. Katie had to start using inhalers again this winter. Emmy's allergies worsened. Adam, Bobby and I had horrible stomach issues. They began testing Adam for Celiac Disease. Bobby and I went to Urgent Care in Nov for these weird rashes and growths under the skin. Then on NYE we both got horribly sick. This is when I think things went from bad to unimaginable. The kids were with their grandparents. We both had blood and I coughed up blood and began a horrific burning in my throat and chest that would last for 4 months. By end of Feb I was in rough shape. I had all kinds of infections and went to move off the bed and experienced pain in what I now know was liver and pancreas, EQUIVELANT, if not more than labor pain (and I've had 3 kids, kidney stones galore, so I don't say that lightly). Bobby helped me downstairs where I collapsed in horrific pain, crying, and unable to move. He called 911 and I was taken immediately because all my vitals were frightening. The er doctors admitted me immediately for heart rate, bp, and severe pain. They ran tests for 3 days before transferring me via ambulance to Scripps La Jolla. I was there 5 days while they poked, prodded, and did every imaginable test. Finally an endoscopy was done under a general anesthetic because I was in such bad shape. There they found chemical like burn of the esophagus and throat and gastric area. It looked like I'd had radiation or been through chemo, I hadn't. They started me on a horrible treatment consisting of IVs, quadrupling acid blockers, iv antibiotics, and a medicine known as Cholestyramine. It is God awful. It made me so nauseous I couldn't watch. It hurt so bad but was the only way to get out the bile acid and detoxify me. To what we didn't know. I left still taking the awful cholestyramine but couldn't handle it 3x a day. I did it as often as I could and knew I'd spend the next 4-8 hours with my head in a bucket. Finally they called me for the biopsy results and wanted me to come in. I didnt tell anyone because I knew that cancer was something they wanted to rule out, so why couldn't they tell me over the phone?! I went alone scared to death but didn't want to tell anyone and have them worry like I did that long week. Things seemed to get a little better when we forced ourselves out for Spring break because we needed just that- a break! (All the meanwhile, Katie had broken her ankle AT school, Emmy knocked herself out on our concrete out front, Bobby was hit by a Target truck pick up in my car, the fixed car died on the freeway ON Katie's birthday while taking her to the orthopedic for a check and we were almost hit twice, the school was complaining the kids missed a bunch of days here and there even though I gave doctors notes because it was so frequent, the list goes on INCLUDING not a week in to the hotel and Bobby's Mom fractures her hip needing surgery and 2 days after that my Mom was admitted for her heart - prayers for them too please!). Two days after getting home from Spring Break I ran a load of clothes in the washer. Before I left to pick the kids I peeked in and it was done but I didn't have time to fold it before I left. I picked up the kids, came home, and immediately from upstairs heard Katie screaming that water was coming from the ceiling. I ran down and the entire laundry room was flooding upstairs into Emmy's room and downstairs into the hall, downstairs bath, and downstairs bedroom. It was like 5 gal buckets continually coming down for 15 mins while I tried to turn the water off in garage and outside. My neighbors came to the rescue and got it off.
It took 8 hours without running water for a plumber to come. We had to keep water off and they'd come the next am and start tearing out walls. What a nightmare. Already scheduled was an appliance guy for the leaking refridgerator. The landscaper had already come and fixed 4 sprinkler heads that shot off that weekend the neighbor complained about. Repair man finds a tear in the line into the water filter and points to more plumbing damage. The plumber comes next, pulls back the fridge, and I'll never forget... says, "by law, I have to quit working because that is hazardous black mold. You need to get your family out now." So we evacuated to a hotel in April. Our prop Mgr reared a new ugly side and blamed us for the entire house leaking. Luckily we have a small renters insurance policy. But it is slow. After 4-5 weeks in a 2 bdrm hotel we were out of pocket 8k and began living with my parents for 2.5 weeks while we hunted for a new house. We got keys 2 weeks ago and moved in 1 week ago today. During our time away our family has begun to feel better. Their allergies, asthma, and stomach problems have slowly been getting back to normal. With my immune system so bad I've been slower. I got an ear infection that ruptured my right ear about 4-6 weeks ago. It was awful. But it was doing better! Thursday my uti got way worse and the dr did a chest xrays because my oxygen wasn't great. It's cloudy most likely from inflammation of being allergic to black mold. Yesterday and last night were a nightmare. Bobby took me to the er and my ear that had been "healing nicely" 2 days before has reruptured and I have a double ear infection. I got treated with iv antibiotics and a 10 day course with follow up emt this week. I've also got a bladder surgery referral appt Wednesday. My Tahoe STILL isn't fixed right but I haven't had time to deal with that when trying to just provide our family with our own shelter, food, and beginning to rebuild our lives. Tuesday, the mold/water restorationCompany gave us our results. Every room in that 4000+ square foot home has 4 out of 5 of the TOXIC BLACK MOLD present in the thousands. It was found in our air filters and water filter in the fridge. There is very few items that can be saved from the toxic mold because of its spores everywhere in the air, but his written opinion matches with my doctors. Since it caused such horrible problems like my organs shutting down it is not safe to even take the maybe 5% of salvaged items... I know things are just things. But we've had 20 years together that built all those things, just gone. Fortunately I have memory boxes for each of my kids and one for us that were in plastic Rubbermaids and sealed. The kids bikes could be saved as they were in the garage. Beyond that, we're starting from scratch...all while having to find a lawyer to represent us because our Prop Mgr is suing us for this!!! Please send prayers, positive vibes, good juju, whatever it is you believe, please consider us. Know it means a lot that you even read this far to let us start the stages of rebuilding. It's more than daunting but we've got to be up for it, sick and all. We really need some ❤ and support get through this.