Hey everyone, I’m trying to raise money because I have a tumor on my flank and I have had a really complicated situation with my health and being able to find a doctor that will help me especially because being uninsured with this complicated case has been a really big struggle. I need a second surgery to get me back on track but my first surgery put me in so much debt that I can’t continue to get the second one unless I can pay down my first surgery or get enough money for the second one.
If you want to know more about my story, please read below.
My name is Amana. I am 23 years old. I am not really the best when it comes to talking about myself, but I’ve reached a point where I do really need help and many people have suggested opening a GoFundMe for myself, so here I am.
I don’t want anything that I’m saying to come out as a sob story. I have been strong and I never blame anyone or anything for the situations that I am in because I believe everything does happen for a reason and whatever is happening to me if nothing else it is meant to make me stronger.
So, here’s a little background on my life. I started working hard at a really young age because my mom became 85-90% paralyzed when I was only 13 and I am the oldest child in an immigrant family. At the time my dad used to work 3 jobs and I used to help out doing almost everything in the house and taking care of my younger sibling. As soon as I could I started working after getting a job permit from my high school at 14 to help out with the medical bills that were already racking up because my mom was uninsured at the time. Life went on like this for 4 years and I still remember vividly how my days went by back then because as many people do point out my adolescence was spent taking care of my mom more than you could ever imagine. But nevertheless, we persevered, my mom got diagnosed with Parkinson’s when I was 18 so that formed some sort of relief, and I was able to go to college. I got a full-academic scholarship for college at Salem College in Winston-Salem, North Carolina where I would only be paying for my own room and board, so I decided to pursue one of my own dreams and go there for college.
When I was in college at Salem, I worked 3 jobs at once to try and keep up with my own costs because my parents couldn’t help me and to start paying off my room and board costs as well as help out with the medical costs for my mom. All my life that’s all I have known is to work, and work hard to get money. And I never ever asked anyone for help with anything, just persevered through everything. I am usually not the kind of person to reach out for help and many of you all who know me know that about me. Before the pandemic hit I used to work in home care, and on top of that I used to work as a medical assistant, and even having those jobs and my little brother working and father working we could barely make it at the end of every month. After the pandemic hit I was furloughed from my job as a medical assistant and then soon after that lost my job in homecare because all of the children of the people I took care of were at home, they no longer needed a home nurse. From the beginning of the pandemic, my dad, who was a waiter, lost his job and has just recently been able to get a job. After some time of being unemployed, and only getting $150 a week for unemployment (which anybody living in Northern Virginia knows that’s not even enough to get groceries let alone get by), I was able to get a job at Whole Foods as a Prime shopper and a job at Five Below, both seasonal. Those jobshelped for a while to pay a few bills like utilities and some medical bills but others were still racking up on the side because after another struggle working with social workers, my mom was finally approved again for Medicare because of disability, however we had to switch insurance companies and they weren’t covering nearly as much as her previous insurance company even though without her Rytary along with other medicines like Gocovari my mom loses her ability to walk. She is only 48 and she’s had this for over 10 years!
Fast forward to these last couple of months, our lives took a turn again even before we would get back on our feet. We were already many thousands of dollars in debt but I started getting really sick and no matter what I did my body would always be in pain and this scared us all because we thought maybe I had gotten COVID, but thankfully that wasn’t the case; but you miss one stone just to get hit with another. I was born with a deformity in my body called hemihyperplasia, which means I have extra cell growth on one side of my body compared to another. Slowly this was getting worse and worse and I had a tumor on my flank that never bothered me before but it was turning into something that I could have never imagined. On top of that, because of the deformity, the right side of the tumor and my body was much bigger than the left and I was forming arthritis on my right side, hindering my ability to do daily tasks even though I am now only 23 (at the time 22), and I am not overweight.
I had to get surgery for this and I applied for many grants but even after showing ample documentation and working with social workers my surgery was deemed medically unnecessary and a “voluntary” surgery, so this surgery ended up costing me well over $50,000 with the doctor charges, hospital bills, anesthesia costs, etc. Even months after, I am still in tremendous pain that I do not show anyone, however, I am told that I will be needing another surgery soon to get the last parts of the tumor out and fix my body fully, adding to the stress that I already have of paying back my debt.
Currently, my family and I are well over $150,000 in accumulated medical debt and it will just keep adding up as I need another surgery, so this is why I have made this GoFundMe as I have no other option and I really don’t know what else to do, it will take us a whole lifetime to pay off this medical debt the way things are now because this doesn’t even include our other debt from rent, and schooling, etc. I am currently working at Walgreens, and when I am not there I drive for Uber and also do Instacart/Doordash when I am not Ubering or at Walgreens all while trying to keep up my education at George Mason University where I am studying to get my Bachelors in Neuroscience.
Please please please, if you can donate just a dollar to help me pay off this surgery debt and raise money for the next surgery I have to get or if you can’t please at least keep me and my family in your prayers that we see the daylight soon in the darkness that we have been facing for years now.