57 Year Old Woman With Multiple Disabilities Seeks Grant Money For Debt Relief
by Marilyn Mustoe
(Cortez, Colorado, USA)
Hello, my name is Marilyn Mustoe. I am 57 years old, and I need some grant money for relief of medically caused expenses.
I am separated from my husband and I live with my eldest son who is 41. We live in Cortez, Colorado, a tourist town about 45 miles from Four Corners.
I have a son that is 36 that lives about 4 blocks from us. He is 36 years of age. I also have a daughter that lives in Ohio and she is 39.
I am disabled which began with a nervous breakdown in March of 2003. I had a back injury in 1989 with 2 discs damaged. My back has deteriorated considerably since 1989.
In March of 2003 I went to our local Mental Health Center. At that time it was called Southwest Colorado Mental Health Center. Now it is called Axis Health Systems.
At my first visit with a counselor I was told I needed medication. I was referred to a Dr. Fairley. She diagnosed me with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.
This alone has many side effects, and I have many: Panic and Anxiety Disorder, Depression, Agoraphobia, Claustrophobia, Bipolar Disorder, hearing voices, Schizophrenia, and a fear of people.
I am an empath and very resistant to changes.
I also saw a Dr. Ragsdale, a psychologist in Durango, Colorado. He concurred with Dr. Fairley's diagnosis.
I am now on several medications (17 plus 2 different kinds of insulin which I give by injections) for all of my problems. I am on Medicaid but still have a small co-pay which is difficult to come up with at times.
I also use a Nebulizer to help keep my lungs cleared out. That treatment is 3 to 4 times a day. I also have sleep apnea and have another sleep study coming up on October thirteenth.
Since first filing for Social Security Disability, my mental condition goes up and down from daily stress. I have good days but mostly I am depressed because of day-to-day life.
I have been so depressed at times I have seriously thought of suicide.
There's not a day that goes by that I don't cry because I am so depressed and worried because of bills to be paid mostly. Now it's because of the possibility of losing the house. My son and I have no place else to go.
My back has gotten very bad. I have Degenerative Disc Disease, severe recessed stenosis in the fourth and fifth lumbar region, forminal canal stenosis, and bilateral stenosis.
I have Neuropathy in my feet, right thigh, and both thumbs. I can barely walk any more. I have the use of a cane when at home and a walker.
I also have Diabetes Type 2, which I see a doctor for. Her name is Manda Guillette. She is my Primary Care Doctor now. I see her for all my conditions except my mental problems.
I also have COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). I am on oxygen 24 hours a day. My doctor has ordered a wheelchair so I can get around because it is so difficult for me to walk. Not only does it wear me down walking but also makes it very difficult to breathe.
My walker is equipped with a large canvas bag that straps onto the walker to carry a portable oxygen tank. I have a concentrator at home to use.
When I do get out it's for doctor appointments, hospital visits, to get tests done, and that's about it.
The fear of people and getting away from home makes it difficult for me to live what most people would call a normal life.
I have been going to mental health for 7-1/2 years now. Every time I go in something new comes out of it. I don't know how long I will have to go, possibly the rest of my life because so many things affect me to extremes.
I go every Friday to my therapist. She is the third one I've seen since I've been going there and soon she will be transferring out and I'll have another new one.
I do not have a vehicle to get around in so I have to get someone to take me when I go to doctor appointments. I do not go grocery shopping at all. I get a little in food stamps but have someone to do the shopping. I make a list and they get what I need.
I filed for Social Security and Disability in May of 2003. I had my first hearing in September of 2003 and was denied in February of 2004. I had an attorney working for me. Her name was Beth Crane.
When the unfavorable decision came back she advised me to seek another attorney. She referred me to Elliott Bloodsworth. He worked on my case from April of 2004 until recently when he left the Law Firm Of Dawes and Harriss.
I am now being represented by Robert Dawes. This Law firm is still working on my disability claim. I was granted SSI in April of 2008. I am now awaiting my third hearing for disability, which I am told will be at least next spring.
I live with my eldest son. In April of this year we found a rent-to-own property. We fell in love with it. There were other people interested in it but we were lucky enough to get it.
At that time my son was working for a company where he was making $2,400 a month. While he was working for this company, on the way to work one morning, he hit a deer.
He was cited for it. He had to get a lawyer to help him out or face jail time. He had a cargo van, which was totaled. He had to purchase another vehicle, which was a small pickup. Then he had to have full coverage on it.
Then the company laid him off. Since he no longer has the good job, his pickup was repossessed. Now he no longer has a vehicle either.
He is now working in a small cafe as a cook. His weekly checks are about $250. All of his check goes to the house payment. He's been looking for another job to go with this one because our house payment is $1,000 per month.
Because of the problems my son had with hitting the deer, court costs, and the lawyer, we are now 4 months behind in payments and have been told by text message that the landlady wants all the back payments by October fifth or she is going to evict us. We owe $3,705 in back payments.
When we got the house we were told there was all new pipes put in the house, all new cupboards, new flooring, and new carpets for the bedrooms.
My son had to hire a plumber because there was no water coming through the water lines. The pipes were so old and rusted they had to be taken apart and cleaned to be able to have water. The lines to the water heater were so bad that one of the pipes broke and flooded the washroom.
All the repairs that have been done, my son has had to pay for. The landlady said she didn't appreciate her tenants paying for unauthorized repairs. My son and I both tried to contact her at the office or her cell phone. The calls were never returned.
It's getting close to winter and the broken windows have not been repaired and the furnace still doesn't work.
I need help to pay back rent and to put some kind of down payment on the house so we can try to purchase it. The cost of the house and extra lot that goes with it are $129, 000. The payments are $1,000 per month.
We would like to get this payment amount reduced. My son is making the payments and has nothing left from his weekly check. This week his check was $253. and all of it had to go towards the house.
I pay the utilities and I am a month behind on most of them. I am on SSI and receive $674 per month.
I also have bills of my own. This month I had to cut out paying for all my bills except for utilities, my credit card, my Montgomery Wards, my Midnight Velvet, pay for an over draft check from my previous account, which my grand daughter got me into a mess.
Then to a lawyer for another overdraft check that was $10 and since the company sent it to a lawyer the cost of the check is $175. I paid half this month and pay half next month to get all caught up.
But this puts me a month behind on some accounts, and many months behind on other accounts. I would like to get all of these paid off.
I have a 19-year-old granddaughter that I love with all my heart. But, I am also afraid of her. She has mentally, emotionally, and physically abused me.
That's how I got into this mess about returned checks. She either made me sign the check so she could go into the store or gas station, or I had to write it out for the amount she wanted even if I had no money in my account.
It took me a long time to stand up to her and say NO, but I finally did. No, I won't turn her in because she has two babies that I love to the deepest ends of my heart. She has two little girls, one is 4 and the other is 2.
We would like to make some improvements on the house. My son wants to extend the kitchen out about 10 feet and the washroom would be extended as well.
I would like to put an awning up on the back of the house because the sun comes through and it is so hot, it makes it difficult for me to stay in the washroom to do laundry or clean.
I have a very difficult time trying to clean because of my health conditions. I can't stand for five minutes without it tearing up my back with pain.
I was on Percocet for 7-1/2 years and just recently put me on a Fentanyl Patch. The patches come off so easily on me.
I have a new appointment on the sixth of October and I don't know what she's going to do about pain relief as I have been without anything but Tylenol for over a week.
I have been in such pain I haven't been able to do anything but sit. And if I'm sitting, I can't get much accomplished.
Realistically, we need help to catch up the payments on the house and a little extra to pay some ahead, and to do some improvements.
I also need some extra so I can pay off most of my creditors. I would also like to get a good running used vehicle for my own use.