Raising money for a service dog

$2,195 of $14k goal

Raised by 36 people in 22 months
Mike Kersten  MOUNT HOREB, WI
My name is Mike Kersten and I am trying to raise money for a service dog, my goal is $14,000 which will help cover the cost of training and expenses of obtaining a service dog. If you were to make a donation I would check into any tax breaks you can get.
​When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson's disease my life went on a rollercoaster.  Not only with my emotions but also regarding my health.  I had never thought that my dreams, activities and life would change so drastically at the age of 33.  This is an old person's disease.  Not someone who has two young children and a long healthy life ahead of them.  One simple as they say diagnosis and poof it all changed.  
My one time dream of retiring at the ripe old age of 65 and watching my grandchildren changed to the age of 34.  What most would consider dull dreams and pointless dreams are all I think about.  I want to try and live a normal life and maintain the functions of everyday living that I can.  I want to watch my two young children at there sports events and school functions.  I want to be involved in there everyday lives as much as possible.  
I was once extremely active and enjoyed outdoor activities, but now the thought of uneven ground makes me cringe.  I would like to walk through the park with my kids  without having balance issues, and not knowing if I am going to fall at that particular time. Then there are times that walking makes become fatigued and lets not forget the faithful gait freezing where you can not move, your frozen hoping that you can convey to your other foot to touch the part that is frozen.  Just so you can attempt to walk, stand or just simply sit.  
Since the day I was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease it has been a struggle.  I struggle on a daily basis with the "why's", "what ifs" what does the future hold for me.  I am constantly surveying my surroundings for the fear of falling.   What will I hit if I fall, who is around me, and what body part will I hurt this time.  Then there are days where I  forget to take medications not because I was to busy, but because I simply just forgot due to my Parkinson's disease. There are days I put something down and when I go to find it I cant for the life of me remember where I put it.  I have put it in the same spot a dozen times but on this particular day I just didn't remember, and it takes time to either remember or for someone else to point out that its right there. I have had many medication side effects.  I have had to have my gallbladder removed because of the medications I take to control my Parkinson's symptoms.  I am just finishing physical therapy due to a  shoulder injury because of falling with the possibility of shoulder surgery in my future.  DBS struggles which in itself should say enough. Then because of the medication side effects there is a huge possibility of having to under go another surgery for the Sinemet pump due to my body not absorbing my medications.
I feel along with my team of doctors that a service dog would make a huge improvement for my daily living. I would feel more secure in going out and playing with my children at the park.  Knowing that I would have a dog to help me with the uneven ground, the gait freezing and just general keeping my balance and keeping me safe from injury.  With the research that I have done they say that a service dog would also help with depression, which is something that I struggle with on a daily basis.  With having more independence with a service dog I would be able to go out and enjoy life a little more.  That would help dramatically with my life.  I would also be getting help with my medications and remembering to take them.  The service dog would also help me find items that I have either misplaced or just plain can't find.  I also hope that it will give me a normalcy in my life which is what we all strive to achieve.
Thank you,  If you have any questions please don't hesitate to contact me
Mike Kersten 
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Update 1
Posted by Mike Kersten
20 days ago
   Share
My name is Mike Kersten and I am trying to raise money for a service dog, my goal is $14,000 which will help cover the cost of training and expenses of obtaining a service dog. If you were to make a donation I would check into any tax breaks you can get.
When I was first diagnosed with Parkinson's disease my life went on a rollercoaster. Not only with my emotions but also regarding my health. I had never thought that my dreams, activities and life would change so drastically at the age of 33. This is an old person's disease. Not someone who has two young children and a long healthy life ahead of them. One simple as they say diagnosis and poof it all changed.
My one time dream of retiring at the ripe old age of 65 and watching my grandchildren changed to the age of 34. What most would consider dull dreams and pointless dreams are all I think about. I want to try and live a normal life and maintain the functions of everyday living that I can. I want to watch my two young children at there sports events and school functions. I want to be involved in there everyday lives as much as possible.
I was once extremely active and enjoyed outdoor activities, but now the thought of uneven ground makes me cringe. I would like to walk through the park with my kids without having balance issues, and not knowing if I am going to fall at that particular time. Then there are times that walking makes become fatigued and lets not forget the faithful gait freezing where you can not move, your frozen hoping that you can convey to your other foot to touch the part that is frozen. Just so you can attempt to walk, stand or just simply sit.
Since the day I was diagnosed with Parkinson's Disease it has been a struggle. I struggle on a daily basis with the "why's", "what ifs" what does the future hold for me. I am constantly surveying my surroundings for the fear of falling. What will I hit if I fall, who is around me, and what body part will I hurt this time. Then there are days where I forget to take medications not because I was to busy, but because I simply just forgot due to my Parkinson's disease. There are days I put something down and when I go to find it I cant for the life of me remember where I put it. I have put it in the same spot a dozen times but on this particular day I just didn't remember, and it takes time to either remember or for someone else to point out that its right there. I have had many medication side effects. I have had to have my gallbladder removed because of the medications I take to control my Parkinson's symptoms. I am just finishing physical therapy due to a shoulder injury because of falling with the possibility of shoulder surgery in my future. DBS struggles which in itself should say enough. Then because of the medication side effects there is a huge possibility of having to under go another surgery for the Sinemet pump due to my body not absorbing my medications.

I feel along with my team of doctors that a service dog would make a huge improvement for my daily living. I would feel more secure in going out and playing with my children at the park. Knowing that I would have a dog to help me with the uneven ground, the gait freezing and just general keeping my balance and keeping me safe from injury. With the research that I have done they say that a service dog would also help with depression, which is something that I struggle with on a daily basis. With having more independence with a service dog I would be able to go out and enjoy life a little more. That would help dramatically with my life. I would also be getting help with my medications and remembering to take them. The service dog would also help me find items that I have either misplaced or just plain can't find. I also hope that it will give me a normalcy in my life which is what we all strive to achieve.


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Marc Kersten
3 months ago

Here is the service dog page for anyone curious. https://www.facebook.com/wilderwoodservicedogs/

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$2,195 of $14k goal

Raised by 36 people in 22 months
Created June 8, 2015
HA
$20
Heidi Aspenson
12 days ago
$50
Anonymous
12 days ago
AL
$50
Angela Leuzigner
12 days ago
MB
$10
Molly Borgstrom
12 days ago
AK
$20
Amanda Moerke Kriesel
13 days ago
TP
$20
Travis Payne
13 days ago
MM
$25
Megan Malkasian
13 days ago

Please consider helping one of my fellow classmates from high school. ❤

KM
$325
Kristi Moerke
14 days ago

You always had our backs when we needed you. Now we can help have yours. Good luck and Godspeed!

SE
$100
Steve Epping
14 days ago
LK
$100
Lisa Kersten
14 days ago

Love you Mike

Marc Kersten
3 months ago

Here is the service dog page for anyone curious. https://www.facebook.com/wilderwoodservicedogs/

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