Hello I'm Elaine Schenk, the mother of Jenny Tanck. This is about Jenny Tanck and her diagnosis of Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and how you can help her on her journey in life.
Jenny's Drive -Jenny has always been driven. Early in life it was determined that she had dyslexia. At first this term used to bother her but as time moved forward she began to realize it was just a word. I feel it actually empowered her try harder. She worked hard thru grade school, high school and college. She graduated from Lakeland University with 2 majors- Communication and Non-Profit management all with a grade point of 3.8 (as well as being a resident assistant), and graduated a semester early !! While at Lakeland College she met her soul mate Trevor Tanck. They were RA's together always helping each other out. Jenny kept talking about this wonderful man that was always helping her and she him with their RA duties. Jenny's friends and I knew that these two were mean't for each other-they both have giving hearts and souls. They started dating and the rest is history as they say.
Career and Marriage- Jenny and Trevor continued to date and live together. They both had the great opportunity of securing jobs at Acuity Insurance in Sheboygan, WI. They were married on August 13th, 2016. Life was going as planned. They constantly saved money while renting and saved enough for a down payment on a older home that they could work on together. This home actually cost less than paying rent and they would be earning equity. All was set for the house closing on 12/1/16 .
Thanksgiving 2016 - We all were excited about Jenny and Trevor's next step of owning a home. A few days before Thanksgiving Jenny started experiencing numbness and tingling in her face, arms and hands-especially the right side. She caulked it up to sleeping on it wrong etc. The day after Thanksgiving we got up early for our ritual of going shopping -not to really buy stuff but to be together and share laughter. She woke up that morning not feeling just right and it just got worse as the day continued. They went home and by Sunday evening her loving, wonderful husband Trevor said this is enough and took her to the emergency dept in Sheboygan. The doctor was concerned as a usually healthy 23 year old woman was having these types of symptoms. They did some testing and nothing was conclusive but she said you must see a neurologist right away. She was able to get in to see the neurologist that week. He took extensive history and tests, including an MRI of her brain. She continued to have numbness and tingling in her face and extremities. She was to get her report on 12/1/16 -the same day of her house closing. So in the morning they went to the house closing and moved all their items out of their apartment -all before noon! In the afternoon they were to see their neurologist and obtain the report of the MRI. As the nurse mom I could sense that we were about to be told information that would change all our lives. The doctor and staff were kind and caring. The doctor showed us Jenny's MRI results. When you look at your daughters MRI of the brain and see large white spots in multiple places you know that is not normal. Your first thought is could this be brain tumors ? What are those white spots. The doctor calmly explained that he thought this could be Multiple Sclerosis but it was too soon to really tell. I will never forget the look in Jenny's and Trevor's eyes. Trevor been holding her hand and I grabbed the other one. Tears swelled in both their eyes. I think I put my nurse hat on and started asking lots of questions as well as Trevor asking many questions as well. Jenny looked at all of us and said "well at least it doesn't appear to be cancer" -leave it to her to look at the bright side. What a day for emotions-the high of closing on your first home together and then being told you most likely have MS.
What's next- What came next is multiple tests and treatments. A few spinal taps, MRI's, intravenous steroids, oral meds to help with the symptoms-numbness, tingling and extreme fatigue/exhaustion.
Jenny has been fortunate in that she has a husband that has been with her for every appointment, treatment and doctor visit. Jenny and Trevor have been fortunate that their employer Acuity Insurance has been supportive in many ways. They have allowed Jenny to work as she can and let Trevor have off when every he needs to be. To say this has been a process is an understatement!! We are trying to find a drug or treatment that will provide Jenny with the quality of life she is hoping for and not have reoccurring episodes. She has been to a few specialists and is constantly looking for what works best. So there have been a few drugs and therapies tried -from oral meds, injections, IV therapy, and fairly newer treatment options. Jenny continues to only be able to work half days due to extreme exhaustion and fatigue due to MS. We still do not have a drug therapy that is working that will prevent relapses and not affect her general health negatively. She currently is looking at a potential change as her liver function tests are 3 times the rate they should be. It is a bit defeating at times hoping for the right combination of a drug and not having the treatment be worse than the disease. We will continue to move forward!
Why a Go Fund Me- With everything that has occurred Jenny and Trevor have always made sure they pay their bills and are always looking to give back to their community. This last fall Trevor accomplished one of his dreams of coaching football and being a mentor to the young men at Lakeland University. Jenny accomplished her dream of becoming a Yoga instructor. Yoga has helped Jenny in so many ways -mentally and physically. Jenny recently began to volunteer at Lakeland college once a week to teach Yoga to students, staff and athletes at Lakeland University. Jenny also started writing a weekly blog as Ms. Minimalist Yogini - how she is and for others to strive for a minimalist lifestyle as well as talk about things to be thankful for and how her diagnosis has shaped her.
So now is our time to give back to them. Jenny and Trevor have a combined student loan debt of $68,000. This really has overshadowed them. This is what we asking for your help with for this awesome couple.
What can you do -We are taking donations to help them pay for their student loans and for alternative therapies not covered by insurance. Jenny has been trying Acupuncture and has found it to help her immensely.
They have an out of pocket cost of $4,000.00 per year for their health insurance -which they hit in about the first month due to the costs of MRI's and treatments. They have the $68,000 in student loan debt that they are paying off. We would like to help them by collecting donations to help them with these costs.
We want to help this truly awesome couple live their lives with less debt as this brings them great distress and worry knowing that they have these bills looming over them. They have enough pain and sorrow with the diagnosis of MS and what this all brings as well as being in debt. We want this couple to be able to work at their careers at Acuity and give back to the community by coaching, mentoring and teaching yoga. Lets give to them as they give to others.
With sincere gratitude and appreciation
PS A special thank you to Trevor for his unwavering love and support-Jenny is truly blessed to have you as her partner and best friend. Also big thank you's to the Tanck family, and The families of Bob and Elaine Schenk. Love you all!!
A note from Peggy Tanck -Trevor's mom
When tragedy hits you just never know what you should to do or how you should handle it. Two years August 13, 2016 my son was married to the love of his life, his soulmate, his best friend. Jenny was not feeling well over Thanksgiving weekend and Trevor knew he had do something to help her. Trevor ended up taking her to the emergency room on that Sunday night. After many tests and discussions with the doctors, after sometime about a month or more they diagnosed Jenny with MS. Multiple Sclerosis is something that we never thought would come out of the doctor’s mouth. It also happened to be the time that they signed the papers on the new house that they bought. December 1, 2016 will be a date that would stick in our minds. We had many great people helping them move out of their apartment and into their new house that Thursday morning. I refer to it as a big day because it effected so many people. My heart sank, and my mind was thinking of what it was going to do to Jenny as well as Trevor. With our faith put in place we prayed and still pray for the miracles to take place. Trusting God in this difficult time when it would be so easy just to walk away from him. We know God is far above all of this. With knowing that Jenny would possibly not be able to work my concern was what Trevor would do to step up making extra to make it work for he and his wife. They have a big student loan debt, expensive medicine as well as trying to just keep up with everyday life. Their passion of following their dreams of helping in the community, Trevor coaching at his alma mater Lakeland University, Jenny receiving her yoga instructor certification. All doing this while Jenny struggles to find those days when she is feeling good.
The stress of everyday life on a person, then a person with MS and a spouse of a person with MS can be very terrifying. I am so blessed that Trevor and Jenny have a great support system with each other as well as family and friends. With Trevor being my son I am concerned for his well being and strength to take care of his wife and the duties that a husband’s responsibility are can be very challenging. I am sure there are many questions like why, how come, questioning faith and so much more. We would love to take donations to help with all of the financial struggles to make it easier for Trevor and Jenny. With this great opportunity of support I hope this is something that can make Trevor and Jenny’s life a little more easy and less financial stress.
We are truly blessed to have 2 families that came together to become one and the support of Jenny’s family and ours is outstanding. We are truly blessed.
- Kelly Spors
- Sarah Coltman-Hageman
- Mark Wagner
Organizer and beneficiary
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