Mom was first diagnosed with Crohn's disease in the early eighties while she was studying to become a high school math teacher. After I was born Mom completed her degree from Columbia College and began her teaching career at Irmo High School.
Shortly after mom started teaching she learned that due to the progression of her disease she would have to undergo surgery to remove her large intestine, ultimately pushing Mom into early retirement and forcing her into Medicare. This began the long process of Mom, Dad, and myself (as a very young child) spending months in the Mayo Clinic in Minnesota.
Flash forward to today, Mom, at a very young 54, has undergone 30+ surgeries, is now diagnosed with liver disease, short gut syndrome, and has the immunity of a patient who would be undergoing chemotherapy even though she has remained cancer free. In the past 3 years alone Mom has spent approximately 30 months in this hospital fighting off infection after infection due to her central line placement consistently becoming infected and causing her body to become septic.
In January 2014, Mom and I flew to Indianapolis to see the transplant team with the understanding that Mom would possibly need a liver transplant. After spending another 2 weeks admitted into the hospital and undergoing multiple tests we found out that Mom would not only need a transplant but 5 new organs: stomach, pancreas, liver, large intestine, and small intestine.
In such a short amount of time our family has come under a huge financial strain because Mom and I must relocate to Indianapolis in order to prepare and go through the transplant process. We also realized that Mom's Medicare plan would only pay for a percentage of her medications and the procedure itself. After speaking with others who were receiving transplants at IU, doing some intense Internet research for Federal or State support, and partnering with our hospitals I came to realize that no funding would be available for this financial undertaking- unless we raised it.
Mom is the strongest person I have ever met and deserves the chance to have a normal quality of life! Whether you are able to donate dollars or well wishes and prayers my family and I would be forever grateful. Please share Mom's story with your friends and loved ones.
So far we have had an outpouring of support and questions of how you can help us during this time which we are SO appreciative of. We will be using this page as our outlet to keep everyone updated on the status of Mom's health. April 17, 2014 will mark the day that Mom and I will be in Indianapolis starting this very long and tedious process. Please feel free to leave comments for Mom so I can share them with her! Thank you all so much for visiting our page and sharing our story!
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