What would you do if you discovered …
Tere Malson, a lifelong friend you’ve loved and appreciated, was stricken with a terrible disease. A special person who made good choices in life, worked hard as a corporate professional and gave back to the community. A special friend to whom many showered their love and best wishes on birthdays, Thanksgiving, Christmas and reunions.
Now Image learning Multiple Sclerosis (MS) has afflicted this special friend and is something she must face every day for the rest of her life. MS is an incurable disease that robs one’s ability to function as a normal human being. Life becomes a daily battle with suffering, anguish and depression.
MS patients like Tere are affected with severe weakness (what once was strong legs now serve to allow one to stand only for extremely short periods like walking to the bathroom), lethargy (lack of energy, enthusiasm along with the inability to stay awake or sometimes fall asleep), vertigo (dizziness coupled with the fear of falling which affects the way you walk), nerve pain (pins and needles spreading throughout your arms, legs and head, as it were about to explode), and cognitive impairment (accelerated senior moments losing tracks of thought, time and place). In short, a person with MS, in many cases, can’t function adequately to maintain a job, lifestyle or even a social life.
Individuals stricken with MS tend to withdraw becoming agoraphobic especially when there is a lack of basic support from family and friends (she’s orphaned and widowed). Friends fear involvement as the MS afflicted becomes more withdrawn and depressed.
If that’s not enough, imagine losing your job, being forced to depend on Social Security Disability Insurance (SSDI) just to get by. Yes, the government does provide assistance to permanently disabled individuals who are unable to work. However, in most cases, this very minimal subsistence leaves the recipient at or near the poverty level. Even if the MS individual could secure work she is limited on how much income she could make before SSDI shuts off.
Financial sustainability is difficult when you consider that the MS person has to balance normal living expenses with medical and pharmaceutical costs. Often times it boils down to eating vs drugs or medical procedures. When compromise isn’t possible, expenses associated with MS can easily wipe all savings and income.
Finally, imagine Tere a person with MS who can only afford a small living space in a less than desirable part of town, with no furniture, except for an old sofa (not a sofa bed mind you) that doubles as a bed. Your “small living place” is filled with boxes, containing items from your past, because there is no money to pay for storage. Personal expenses, medical procedures and essential drugs are now beyond your reach. Without family, you are alone and as the disease progresses, you lose the courage to reach out to friends and ask for help. That’s simply the definition of hopelessness and despair.
The purpose of this campaign is to help Tere Malson,
a dear lifelong friend who has been afflicted with MS and has lost everything. Without family to provide support, it is essential that we, the community, provide much needed support that can result in a more sustainable lifestyle. The plan will unfold in stages beginning with the immediate need to satisfy her medical bills and provide access to essential drugs. We now reach out to you in order to set a goal to satisfy these expenses. Knowing that the community is available to serve the needs of someone so deserving will definitely make a difference in her quality of life. I am confident that you and those who have taken the time to read this message will work together, as a community, to provide this wonderful person a path toward a more sustainable lifestyle.
Your time and generosity is so appreciated. Any amount of donation is a blessing and sharing this story with your personal community is invaluable. Sharing and giving come from OUR heart and is the acknowledgement that others may be in greater need than ourselves. Please help us with our campaign to restore hope to the hopeless.
- Regina Burris
- GG Najour
- Keith Hughes
- Jon Hoppe
- Mike & Kathy Perdue
Organizer and beneficiary
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