First of all, we ask for prayer. We ask for God to bless this change and request. We believe in You and trust in Your provisions.
Denise was diagnosed with a major mental health disorder quite a few years back, and had undergone serious treatment, both invasive and non-invasive, for many years. It was decided a slower lifestyle was needed to help keep her stability, hopefully, in check. I retired, and Denise and I moved to Tennessee 2.5 years ago. We did everything right, or so we believed, and bought some remote land with a house. The idea was to move into a homestead lifestyle and I was to work at my plumbing profession. We left our grown kids, grandkids and parents in California for this move. For a while, everything was great. However, the onset of additional medical conditions, and complications to her already unstable mental condition, created an almost insurmountable hill for Denise. Her gastroparesis is debilitating. Her cardiac condition and orthostatic hypotension causes frequent fainting episodes. Diabetes issues have increased her medication and monitoring needs. Her growing problems with side effects from medications has caused significant issues. She was recently told her cholesterol was completely out of control again, even while taking multiple medications and injections, and she is at high risk for a stroke. She is currently being worked up again by cardiology, gastroenterology and neurology specialists. She just turned 50.
Denise has been on Disability for many years, and unable to work due to her mental and medical conditions. She has a small disability income, but it does not begin to fully support the household. Upon my retirement, my income decreased. My plan had been to work; however, due to the nature of all of her mental and medical illness(s), I do not have the capability of working out of the home at a full-time level while leaving her at home all day, every day, unmonitored. She requires supervision, and I am her only family here to provide that. Denise lost quite a bit of weight before moving to Tennessee and her nutrition needs are complicated between the diabetes and gastroparesis (and many dietary requirements). She was already thin when we moved here, but has continued to slowly lose more and more weight. Her physicians have concerns.
With all Denise's illness and daily discomfort, we attempt to make ends meet. She has always had big plans to make money selling our eggs and farmed goods, but is too sick most days to make any progress. I have been struggling to create an online business or two, but have only made small progress. The medical bills have piled up over the last 2.5 years. When we purchased the house and property, we knew improvements needed to be made; however, we did not realize we would be competing with medical issues, procedures, tests and prescriptions. Our health insurance benefits changed upon my retirement due to being an out-of-state retiree, and costs were higher than expected. Due to some unexpected recent expenses, we are also currently two months behind on our mortgage. In addition, we have credit cards in collections for just over $29,000 that were used to pay for medical expenses. If these were not paid in full at the time they were completed, additional testing could not be done. Some needed house improvements were also put on these credit cards initially as we originally thought they were going to be paid off quickly during our first six months here. Some of those few costs also remain.
Our current situation weighs heavily on Denise. The stress of our finances contributes significantly to her continued mental health problems, and to many of her medical issues as well. Stress and anxiety overwhelm her. If she could simply sit down one day and know that the creditors have been paid, and we are caught up on our monthly mortgage, I believe her mental health, and medical conditions, would improve (at least temporarily). An amount of around $32,000 would help us reach this goal.
We are hopeful to extend this financial request later on as well. In our immediate future, if we didn't have such a mortgage hanging overhead, and the house and land were paid for, I know that would make a significant difference as well. Now that I am unable to work full-time due to her mental and medical conditions, and Denise is unable to work at all, it is often difficult to make our monthly payments and we live paycheck-to-paycheck. Our online business is not flourishing as quickly as we hoped. We have no equipment to assist with any farming endeavors that might help us bring in an income. Living month to month, we have no available income to pursue any additional equipment needs for farming or sustainability. There are no extra funds to buy barrels for rain, tractors for harvesting, a log-splitter, or even a proper mower. With no mortgage hanging over us, I believe Denise would love to see our dreams of having a fully functional homestead become a reality. That is why she wanted to move here to Tennessee and pursue a simple, homestead lifestyle. We just don't have the equipment and supplies yet to do it.
Denise is always involved in her community here, and assists with events as often as possible. She makes baked goods and offers her time for our community fundraising events, many of which support our local volunteer fire department. I am also a volunteer firefighter for the local fire department in our community. She has been known to also cook for local families when they are unable to cook for themselves, whether due to financial or health concerns. She makes jams, jellies and candy to give out to local community members. She is also active in her local Women's Bible Study Group. Her community, and all the animals within the community, keep her going. Prayer requests are always added to her list.
Prayers are much appreciated. And I thank you for any contributions you may be able to make.
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