Two and half years ago, life as they knew it, suddenly and abruptly changed. They were thrown into the spin cycle and it has not stopped. In less than a week, they lost their first grand baby, their youngest son had an emergency appendectomy, and Brent collapsed due to his gall bladder rupturing and pancreatitis. After 9 weeks in the hospital in critical condition, he was sent to a nursing home for rehab. After 2 days in the nursing home, Tina was sent to the hospital with a football-sized tumor in her abdomen, resulting in a complete open hysterectomy. During this time, following a bout with debilitating hives and severe joint pain, Tina was diagnosed with an autoimmune disorder which causes her to battle continued pain, swelling, and hives.
With both Brent and Tina in separate hospitals, no income coming in, and medical bills mounting, they were desperate for relief. Fortunately, Brent had purchased a small disability policy through his work…he also had great health insurance. Tina has a really great job as an office manager and is so grateful to be working with amazing people. Unfortunately, with all the medical bills, taking care of Brent, (in and out of the hospital), car repairs, a teenage son at home, the normal sicknesses, and life, in general, Tina is burning the candle at both ends. Tina has been staying at the hospital with Brent in the evenings, after working long days…On Friday nights, one of their older children will stay at the hospital with Brent, while Tina goes home to spend time with their youngest son, as well as get laundry done, make meals for the week, and attempt to get the other daily living tasks handled.
This has been a long and tiring journey. Brent has had so many surgery’s in the last two years (over 30 procedures) and is still in constant pain, accompanied by nausea. Their insurance is almost maxed out and is beginning to charge them a $300 per month deductible. Times are tight, and money is even tighter, with only one income coming in, as well as a small amount from Brent’s disability.
For Brent to come home from the hospital and not be placed in a long-term nursing facility, Tina needs to purchase a special machine specific to gastric suction. In Florida, due to liability issues, this machine cannot be rented. The cost for this machine is about $700. In addition to the purchase of the machine, Tina will need to take off work from time to time to learn how to use the machine as well as care for Brent. She will need to come home in the middle of her work day, to tend to Brent’s midday meds, feeding (via TPN and J/Tube), and dressing changes. This is about an hour and 15-minute drive round trip. We would love to bless them with some extra money to not only help with the cost of the suction apparatus, but to help with Tina’s income as she takes days off as needed, gas expenses, as well as help them with Christmas for their 3 children and grandson.
We love Brent and Tina. They have touched so many lives with their selflessness and sacrifice through the years. Many of you have asked what you can do to help. Let’s shower them over the Christmas holidays and beyond.
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