Are you there god it's me Laura

Are you there god it's me Laura

I am just having a really rough time all the way around right now. A little about me, I am a single mom of two. I have supported myself and my kids with no help for as long as I can remember. I was diagnosed with stage 4 nsclc adnocarcenoma on feb 2015. I was told at that time that it was inoperable and had metastized to both lungs lymph nodes head liver and bones. I went through 8 weeks of radiation treatments and was put on chemo immediately. Chemo was really rough on me and I was moved to opdivo as soon as it became approved for lung cancer patients. I lost my job of 25 years because they eliminated my position. I have no doubt it was due to my illness as I was always promoted and had an excellent record. Things where going ok being on social security and getting Medicaid and health was doing much better on opdivo. I was dealing with trying to live and not being able to work and spending time with my family. About three months ago Medicaid said I make too much and kicked me off. I was floored...I am barely making it and the plans for obomacare are going to cost me 1/3 of my earnings from SS. I don't know how I am going to be able to afford medical and pay all my bills my mortgage etc. and eat. I am trying to fight the decision but it's not looking good and I really need a lawyer to help. Then about four weeks ago I had to be brought to er was in tremendous pain. I thought it was a medication side effect but it was an infection and from the emergency scans it appears the opdivo is not working any longer. Some of the tumors have increased in size. However the infection needs to clear before they can run further scans and do a biopsy. I am really worried sad and depressed. I am taking depression pills but I am just so overwhelmed with everything coming down on me right now and I am alone I have no one that has my back. I am crying all the time and can't seem to pick myself up and get positive. I feel so hopeless ...I wish I had a more positive message but I just feel that there has to be others going through this as far as finances and illness etc maybe someone can point me in the right direction or give me some advice as to how to deal with everything. Thank you for listening

12 Replies

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  • Laura 4,

    Thank you for reaching out. Please email me pbezruki@freetobreathe.org or call at 844.835.4325. We have resources I can send to you that should help. Everything we share with you is free. I will email those out to you as soon as I hear from you. I also have a packet of information I could snail mail, if you want to share your address.

    Please hang in there, people care and there is help available. Please keep fighting. It is worth it! Big hugs, Peggy

  • Laura,

    Also, have you spoken to the nurse navigator or social worker where you get treatment - do they know about your circumstances? They should be able to help you.

    Again, please contact me so I can send you those resources (including legal help).

    Bountiful blessings.

  • Hi Laura4,

    First of all I am very sad to hear you have no extended family to help you through this terrible time. I too was recently diagnossed with sslc and I know how easy it is to feel overwhelmed and depressed. I think once you investigate Obama care farther you will find that even though the premiums sound high once you take off your tax credit you will find its very affordable. Based on what my friends are paying and the fact you have 3 dependants counting yourself I would say your tax credit will be around 6 or 700.00 . Were you aware of the credit? Maybe I'm wrong but it's definitely worth checking into. I sincerely hope your luck changes and things work out for you.

    Best wishes of healing and prayers,

    RW

  • I am so sorry you are going through this. I realize this whole situation feels overwhelming, but please don't give up yet. I wish I was there to give you a big hug, but I can only send you a virtual one. Sending you positive and calming thoughts.

    Stephanie

  • Are you eligible for Medicare? If so they offer an extra help program for the impoverished. Sending prayers

  • I am sorry it's taken me so long to reply I have been very sick at one point I didn't think I was going to make it as I couldn't breath and was in tremendous pain. I applied again for Medicare as a permenantly disabled person and got my monthly medical bills from the hospital which are about 30 to 40k so hopefully I will be able to get it based on those two facts which will help me tremendously. Obamacare was only going to give a tax credit of 140 per month so my plan would end up costing around 265 and with a 5500 deductible. I am still waiting for the final determination on Medicaid and keeping my fingers crossed and praying. I am still looking to get assistance with my house payment or anything really I can get help with. I really need to find some one to talk to Aldi and a good anti depressant as I think I just can't do this one in my own it's too much. I had a pet scan Wednesday and am waiting on the results to see how bad the cancer has spread. I am supposed to start keytruda in January. I am really trying to stay positive it's just very hard.

  • Hello Laura, I have been following your story and wanted to let you know not to give up. You are a lovely woman who got dealt a bad hand of cards. I was diagnosed with small cell lung cancer in 2014. I am on my third round of treatment. Was diagnosed with breast cancer the end of 2012 and had a double mastectomy the end of January 2013. Had breast reconstruction in 2015 and all seems to be well. However, I was diagnosed with the small cell lung cancer and had two rounds of chemotherapy, which made me very sick. I lost my hair with the chemo two times. It grew back the first time and came in completely white. The second time I lost my hair, it grew back very curly and dark with a gray patch on top. Go figure lol!

    Anyway, with this third bout of small cell I am being treated with Keytruda. Will have my 4th infusion next week. I have one infusion every three weeks. The only side effect I have had is waking with a headache. There will be no hair loss with Keytruda. Otherwise, no other side effect at this point. I live in Santa Barbara, CA and we have a state-of-the-art cancer center here. They are expanding it as I write. Lovely nurses and my doctor is wonderful. I am 65 and disabled. My two sons have been by my side since I first became sick. I live in section 8 housing in a nice one bedroom in a senior complex. My oldest son is staying with me and driving me to my appointments. I see a psychiatrist about every 2 - 3 months and am on depression medication - I am bi-polar. I see the nutritionist at the cancer center and check-in with her once a month. Protein is very important in my diet along with lean meats and lots of fresh vegetables and fruits.

    Please try to be positive. I know it seems impossible right now. We will beat this cancer I'm sure. Life is good, I have no pain, and my treatment so far is going well. I will keep you in my prayers. God bless you and your children. Let me know if you have anything I can help you with.

  • God bless you. You are an amazing person as well and you sound very tough. I am blessed to know people like yourself just telling me your story has picked me up a little. I will pray for you in this fight also!

  • Laura,

    Your story is heartbreaking. I hope that the info Peggy sends you has some actions that you can use right away.

    Even if there is a legal aide group that could help you, I recognize that the energy to deal with that is very difficult to find when you are coping with being so ill and bringing up two beautiful boys. Still, it might be worth a search to see if there is a a legal aide group in your area.

    Is there a social worker where you get your cancer care? Ah, I see Peggy has already suggested that. One way or another, you need some to advocate for and with you.

    Sending all best hopes.

    Anita

  • Laura,

    You story is heartbreaking. I have to ask if you have tried to setup a GoFundMe.com page? If you have, send me, or us the link and I would donate to you, and post it to my friends on Facebook and other sites. I know that is not the answer, but everything has to be at least tried, looked at and given a shot.

    My own story also has frustrations, as I assume anyone with cancer has a story like these. In a country that spends about $5 billion on cancer research a year, you would like to believe they have set aside some money to help those with cancer to simply survive their day to day lives.

    I know there is the Social Security Disability route, and I hope you have that. I was approved to be on total disability on June 4th of this year. However, there is a 5 month waiting period until they send you the first check. Which is rather disheartening when you think anyone my age (52) has been paying into the system forever (since 1980), there wouldn't be a 5 month waiting period. But there is.

    Now, had I been a Syrian Refugee, I could have picked up a check within a month, but I digress.....

    My first check is to hit our mailbox on January 20, 2017. My doctors gave me 6-12 Months to live on January 5, 2016. I will assume, you see the issue.

    I wish there was more help for cancer patients to simply live their lives waiting for the research dollars to pay off, and help them, and others like them. PLEASE keep us posted on your progress, and if you do have a GoFundMe campaign, please let me know what it is.

    I know things might seem dark, foreboding and not welcoming at all, but you have to remember, you are not alone. You are never alone. Take a deep breath, and relax a little, let your worries fly away. Nothing has ever been helped by worry. No problems have been solved by worrying. Life, living, your children's hugs, that is what living and life is all about.

    You have friends all over the place praying for you and hundreds more like you. Hold your head up, stay positive, keep the fight alive, and please, please never ever give up.

    Mike "Serrecko" March

    MikesWebSpot.com

    Leader of The Skyline Gaggle of Noobs

    A Fundraising Paintball Team

    TheSkylineGaggle.com

  • I thank you for your kind words and sorry I haven't responded sooner I have been very ill the last month and not out of bed much. I was really afraid I wasn't going to make it but I am finally starting to feel a little better and am down to sleeping about 17 hours a day. I do have a go find me page that was started several months ago. I have attached the link thank you again. gofundme.com/hopeforlaura

  • Laura, I contributed what I could for now, and hopefully I can get a few more to pony up a little more. Don't worry about not replying soon enough, because whenever you do, is soon enough anyway. I do hope you are feeling better, and I truly understand that being in bed for days at a time. I am coming off my own little 7 day ordeal with the sheets an the pillows. But I am still in the fight.

    Glad to see you are still in the fight as well. I have added your GoFundMe link to my own links page on my web site. Not sure it will do any good, but I hope it will and it won't unless it put it up there, an it is up there.

    M

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