For the last decade, Bonnie has been battling a failing colon. The ulcerative colitis she was diagnosed with in 2009 soon spiraled out of control, despite various medications and a brief remission. For the last several years, her day to day life has been marked by intense pain and immobility, countless surgeries (some of which were not done well), ostomies, toxic drugs, fruitless therapies, extreme weight loss and gain, meetings with doctors—and more than a few late-night trips to the ER for emergency operations, infections, even sepsis. Not only has her health been impacted, she’s also suffered from depression and endured an unexpected divorce. Her illness has also kept her out of work off and on, and struggling to stay on top of mounting medical bills.
But through it all, even on her darkest days, Bonnie continues to forge ahead with her chin up and her eyes sparkling. She still wakes up before the sun quite often to gather at the airport with her fellow Pease Greeters and welcome American soldiers home from Iraq and Afghanistan. She rides her bicycle around Portsmouth—one of the only forms of exercise she can physically do right now—and makes time for friends and tends to her family. She hasn’t given up hope of having a normal existence again someday—where she can travel without worry, take long walks without fear, meet friends on a moment’s notice, enjoy life the way we’re all meant to, but especially the way someone like Bonnie is meant to.
Right now, she is preparing for the first of three J-Pouch reconstructive surgeries at NYU Langone in New York City. This last-ditch effort—which will take place over the next nine months—will hopefully repair the damage caused by her previous surgeries and allow Bonnie to ultimately resume her regularly scheduled life. There are risks, as with any surgery, as well as long recovery times, required bed rest, travel expenses and of course all the charges not covered by her insurance.
With her reluctant and very humble agreement, we’re starting this Go Fund Me in the hopes of alleviating a little of Bonnie’s stress. Every time she’s out on disability, she’s making only 60 percent of her salary. Compounded with medical expenses, money has become a source of anxiety and concern. We want Bonnie to go into this stretch of surgery (and healing) with a clear mind and the weight of the world off her shoulders. Her chances of full recovery are so much greater if she’s able to truly relax and focus on taking care of herself. Please consider contributing whatever you can—no amount is too small!—to help our lovely, amazing, tough-as-nails, sweet-as-pie Bon-bon. The money we raise will be used to cover hospital bills and living expenses.
Feel free to share this page with anyone you know who knows Bonnie, or anyone you think will be moved by her story!
With love and gratitude,
Jessica Ritter (childhood friend) and Megan Monforte (Disney College Program roomie)
DonationsSee top donations
- JoAnne-Fred Schottler
- Amy Duggan
- Dan Edwards
- Charles Pugliese
- Cindy Martin
Fundraising team: Friends of Bon-Bon (3)
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