Hope and Healing for my Mother

Growing up, it was pretty much just my mother and I. She was my protector, my provider, my teacher, and my best friend.

She taught me the importance of fighting for what’s right, always finding the humor in any situation, and the reward of giving unconditionally.

The last few years have been hard on her, as she has faced several health challenges and injuries. But she has always come back swinging. This year however, tells us a different tale.

It all started February last year. She went thru a series of hardships in rapid succession, starting with the sudden loss of a much beloved pet, then immediately after she was laid off from her job, of course losing all her benefits and insurance in the process. Then, almost immediately after that, she was struck with a severe case of Shingles.

The virus secured itself in the small of her back, affecting her spine, the muscles along her lower back, and her organs. The initial breakout from over a year ago has never completely gone away, and now she has a second occurrence further up her spine which is far worse than the original. The pain is absolutely debilitating.

Due to the extreme pain, she has been unable to go back to work. She has been without insurance or any regular medical care this entire time.  Besides the Shingles, she also has diabetes, hypertension, osteoporosis, and Hashimoto’s disease. She needs to be on regular medication for all of these, but has not been since losing her job and insurance last year. She has had to make several trips to the emergency room since all of this started, and we are looking at over $17,000 in hospital bills so far.

Plus, due to the excruciating and constant pain of the Shingles, her blood sugar and blood pressure are running far higher than normal – as they are both affected by pain. She has been warned by more than one emergency room doctor that she is on the verge of both a diabetic coma and a stroke.

My mother is looking for, and what I desperately want to help her achieve, is a chance to start fresh. She needs to move to a less expensive place to live, but cannot afford the deposits and moving fees. She needs to pay off the accumulating hospital bills, but hasn’t the money to do so. She needs to be able to afford insurance, so she can get back to a primary care doctor and get back on the maintenance medications so desperately needed.

She is currently surviving only on Social Security and whatever I can supplement for her – neither of which is much.

In these economic times, it is always hard to ask people to donate money, but even one single dollar can help my mother. Please help me to raise money and most importantly to raise some hope to this amazing woman who is in need.


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Heather Giarratano Higginbotham 
Independence, MO
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