As most of you know, Melissa Moeller has been battling several medical issues for about 15 years, including migraines, endometriosis, respiratory distress, and psychogenic non-epileptic seizures (PNES). As these have increased in severity and frequency her medical bills have mounted up. We would like to help her pay down those existing bills and provide a little extra to help her afford more consistent treatment in the near future.
First, a little on her current condition. Earlier this spring Melissa spent two weeks at the Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, going through extensive testing and was finally given a definitive diagnosis. Until this point the exact conditions (and necessary treatments) were unknown.
(At the Mayo Clinic)
The combination of medical issues and resulting pain has taken a pretty hard toll. Usually it takes all of her energy each week to keep performing at a regular job.
By the evenings she is often too weak or sick to make the half block walk to Walgreens. Much of the weekend is spent in bed recuperating and/or suffering migraines and other symptoms. (As someone who had migraines for 30 years, I know how just that one condition can make it almost impossible to move or think until it passes off. I can’t imagine adding the pain of endometriosis and risk of seizures in public. It also demands an extra effort to perform all your daily tasks in spite of the symptoms. This adds to the exhaustion.)
Here’s a recent episode, just for perspective:
Coming into Labor Day weekend, Melissa was at work when a new migraine medicine began interacting with another existing medication. It became difficult to speak clearly. Words came out scrambled and slurred. When she called me for a ride home she could hardly speak. Her doctor said to take her to ER rather than home. It took hours to get her admitted, even with someone there to speak for her when she couldn’t answer. (They eventually discovered that she could write answers but not speak them clearly.) The following day they changed her prescriptions and the symptoms began to fade, but it took another day just to find a doctor to sign her out so she could go home. By then her chance to recuperate over a holiday weekend was spent sitting in a hospital, racking up new bills and stress.
(She'll love me for posting this pic!!)
It also takes a toll on personal relationships. We all know Mel loves to hang out with friends and go to church, but any added effort uses up all her reserves. And she can’t drive until the PNES is under control. So she is isolated, dependent on costly Uber rides and lifts from [her very appreciated!] friends, in steady and sometimes debilitating pain. And still she gets through the week, in spite of the symptoms.
In order to make progress against the diseases, she needs additional resources. Currently the new and old
medical bills are eating up all her monthly income. But we can make a big difference over the next 6 months. Here’s what we’d like to do.
First, we want to pay off her remaining co-pay of $2000 for the Mayo Clinic, so she doesn’t have that eating into her monthly budget. She has found a good treatment provider to help her with the PNES seizures, but needs help with the $600 a month for regular treatment. There is an additional $400 a month in other medical bills and prescription payments, plus pain management therapies. And I think it would be a huge blessing to simply hire a house cleaner to come in once in a while to help out so she doesn’t have to spend her limited energy on mundane chores.
Our goal here is to make the next six months the turning point. For years it has been a new illness and harder life every year. We want this to be the year it starts getting better. I’m hoping many people can make a one time gift to pay off the debts, and a few can make a monthly commitment for just 6 months to give her a big step forward coming into next spring.
Mel has a giving heart. Let’s give back.
Thanks for reading!
Rick & Steph Dupea
(Mel, how we want her to feel again!)
- Charisa Nicholas
- Craig Moeller
- Robert Root
- Meag and Jose Estrada-Diamond
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