Paul and I met and started dating in January 2010 and were engaged before the end of the year. Unfortunately, during that time, I started to get really sick - to the point where I had to take a long-term leave of absence because I physically could not be in the office everyday. Once that leave ran out, we made the decision that I would leave the job since I didn't think that I would be able to perform my beloved work in my condition and would probably lose my job over it anyway. This was a very difficult decision for me since I worked very hard for my degrees and loved the type of work I did. It was also hard on us financially since, in addition to his part-time job with the opera, Paul is self-employed as a computer consultant.
A week before our wedding, I suffered a very specific type of heart attack that was based soley on long-term emotional stress. My anxiety and stomach disease were also getting worse, to where I didn't feel that I would effectively be able to work full time in an office again. It is incredibly hard to maintain employment when you have as many hospitalizations as I have had (maybe in the ballpark of 75 in the past 7 years).
As you can imagine, having that many hospitalizations has been incredibly hard; physically, mentally, emotionally, and financially (especially with my heart attack occuring when I had no health insurance). Paul has been amazing, working his two jobs to keep us running. The past two years, I have had contract positions that I could work from home, but so far this year, I don't yet have anything like that coming in. I also have a photography business, but with little money for advertising for Paul's or my businesses, they are falling on hard times.
We have tried to keep our heads above water for as long as possible, but the tide is coming in and things are getting harder and harder to keep afloat. We hate to ask for help, but are also the first in line to offer help whenever we can.
Paul has also been looking for full time employment for the past year with few nibbles and zero results, further adding to our struggles. We have unfortunately had to rely at times on support from our parents, but that isn't something that we can continue to do, as times are tough all around.
We also know that others are going through tough times and may not be able to help financially. If you are still wanting to help, you might consider forwarding this on to others or referring people to either Paul's computer consulting business or to my photography business (Elizabeth Blessitt Photography). We are more than willing to work and earn the money, but our known client bases are currently in a drought. Both businesses offer a $25 referral credit toward the referrer's next appointment with us.
Thank you so much for your consideration. We are forever grateful for the love and support.
Elizabeth & Paul Serna