Mom's Final Trip

Mom's Final Trip


My name is Josh and I was my mother's caregiver for over 6 years. My mother, Peggy,  was everything to me and I devoted a good portion of my life to taking care of her. It wasn't always easy because funds were always limited.  With the amount of care that mom needed, I couldn't work, and it took us nearly 2 years to find an agency that would hire me to help care for her; money was dwindling fast with doctor bills and typical "life" stuff. She was on oxygen 24 hours a day and the doctor's visits were monthly.

My mother had advanced COPD and emphysema. She was a trooper, a cancer survivor, one of the strongest-willed people I have ever known, and she fought hard every day for 12 years (average life expectancy for someone in her condition was 10). There were an abundance of hospital ER visits, at least 2 a year, that took up a large portion of the last 4 years of her life. In December of 2016, mom went into the hospital for an operation on a bowel obstruction. She already had so many things happen to her body: the breathing trouble, the cancer, kidney disease, an atificial bladder and irregular heart issues. 

The doctor's told us after her operation that she wouldn't survive, she was nearly comatose and unresponsive. But, mom being mom, pulled through and after a couple weeks went into rehab. Once in rehab, she fought with issues again and was sent back to the ER for bladder issues. As always, mom pulled through and headed back to rehab. Soon after, her electrolytes dropped and she was sent to the ER again. It didn't look good, but being the stubborn person she was, she thankfully pulled through. It looked as though she was going to make it, her breathing on her traech was improving and soon she'd be off it. She was transferred to a less intense rehab, her spirits were high, we were all so happy she was finally getting out. Five days later, mom had a heart attack and passed away.

I don't tell this for sympathy. I tell you this because I want to explain how brave she constantly was and how much trauma she experienced in those last 5 months. It destroyed every single one of us to lose her. I am still destroyed and miss her constantly. My mother was a wonderful person. Funny. Compassionate. Brave. A real spitfire with a heart of gold. It had been so long since she had it easy, and recently I was reminded of the last time she was truly happy, a time when we visited South Carolina. 

Mom mentioned to me that she wanted her ashes spread in South Carolina, and I agreed to do that for her, so that's why I'm doing something I don't normally do, I'm asking for the help of strangers. When mom died, I lost my job w the agency, so I am currently unemployed. I only have enough budgeted to pay the bills and mortgage, with less than $300 dollars to spare a month. It also hasn't been long since she passed, it was just in April, and I'm still trying to make it through day by day without sinking into an abyss of major depression.

I hope my amount is reasonable, I ask for only $1300.00
to fly to South Carolina for four days and give mom the send-off she always wanted. Because money has been such an issue, we weren't able to afford a proper funeral for her, just the cremation. So, I have to do this for her. I want to give me mom the heartfelt goodbye she deserves, to return to the last place she felt alive, the last time she didn't need a machine to breathe for her.

$1300.00 covers enough for me to fly there for four days, stay at a hotel, be able to eat while I'm there, and return back. I'm hoping to be able to go in two months.

I feel weird asking for help, it makes me feel like a burden, but I don't know who else to turn to. If I am able to raise the money, it would mean the world to me. I wish I could provide something as an incentive, some kind of trade-off. Unfortunately, I have nothing to offer except gratitude and the utmost appreciation to anyone who can contribute. I know my story isn't unique, there are people who have gone through things far worse than I have. 

I'm not sure if I can even conjure the proper words to express how grateful I am to anyone who can help. This is not easy for me to ask, but I want to do this for my mom, for Peggy. She got the fuzzy end of the lollipop so often through life and I just want to give her something I never could while she was here. By contributing, you will be helping provide her a final trip to a place she felt at peace. You'll also be helping me onto the road to heal my broken heart from losing my best friend. I am devasted from losing her and it would be a nice change to have tears of joy.

Thank you for taking the time to read my story. I sincerely appreciate it.

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Josh Soriano 
Streamwood, IL