I can see by my trip to the mailbox that it is year-end letter time from all the great organizations we support and others that we wish we could support. Year-end donation letters mean the dreaded April 15 tax day is around the corner. We take the good with the bad. The thing I hate is that I have limited funds and can’t support all the organizations making appeals. This year, though we are amazingly blessed and thankful, our resources are smaller than they’ve ever been before.
If you are planning your year-end giving I want to make you aware of one organization that is especially close to my family. During the past year, the National Transplant Assistance Fund (HelpHopeLive.org) has helped Robin and I keep our heads above water in the face of large transplant expenses.
The NTAF, through gifts of individuals, paid for lodging and meals for Robin while I was hospitalized after transplant. It filled our gas tank for multiple trips to Lahey Clinic. It made it possible for my donor, my son Josh, to take flights to Maine for evaluation and then to return to New York City. (He was going to take a bus back to New York 5 weeks after giving me half his liver. Can you imagine that? Thankfully, the NTA flew him back to spare him that painful exhaustion.) The NTA stepped in when my liver disease caused breaks in my teeth which required $2800 in dental work. It paid huge medical deductibles for CT scans and MRI’s. Truthfully, I don’t know where we’d be today if not for the assistance of the NTAF through helphopelive.org.
And now that I am post-transplant, the NTAF has not abandoned me. It still is helping us with deductibles and co-pays for up to two years. As so many of you have made tax-deductible gifts to the NTAF in my honor, it has carried out its mission to help transplant families. I continue to face large co-pays with my anti-rejection medications costing thousands. I also face CT scans and MRI’s every six months for awhile and monthly blood labs for the rest of my life.
People have been so generous and God has provided all our needs through His church. I am so thankful for the church families at First Baptist Church in Portland and Christ Chapel in Raymond for standing with us and making sure our needs have been met. I was tremendously blessed by my friends at Edward Little High School, Ron Carroll and Friends for their efforts and a little girl named Gracie who conducted a raffle in my behalf. Students in Georgia sold PUSH bracelets and family and friends came alongside us to hold us up.
The Lord has provided Robin with a temp job since September and I am sure He has answers for the upcoming frightening challenge of being uninsured January 1. NTAF will help us pay premiums if we continue to have funds in my account but we continue to pray that Robin will have full-time employment with benefits. We are strangely at peace with the whole thing. I guess that may be a lesson learned through these last 18 months. Our God holds us in His palm.
I am growing stronger every month and hope to be off disability and back to work by summer. Statistics tell me 1 in 6 are able to return to full-time work after transplant. I’m going to try my darndest to be that 1!
Until then, we continue to need a hand facing the medical expenses of transplant and life with a new liver. If you are considering year-end giving, I ask you to consider making a tax-deductible gift in my honor to www.helphopelive.org (NTAF).
Thank you so much for considering it. What a year it has been! I doubt anyone is more thankful than I this Christmas.
Other organizations we love that could use your support:
- www.compassion.com – Compassion International
- Rus and Jen Willette – The Navigators
- The Good Shepherd Food Bank
- Abba Women’s Pregnancy Resource Center
- Love146 – End Sex Trafficking
- Shoahannah’s Hope