Home Buying Grant For Immune Disease Disabled Single Mom Of Three Boys
by Sara Gersen
(Sunrise, FL, USA)
I'm a 32-year-old single mom with three boys, ages 13, 10 and 8.
When I divorced in 2006, I wondered how I could move forward with my life. I had no employment, bad credit (due to divorce) and three kids to raise.
The divorce judge had ordered my ex-husband to pay child support for our three kids. However, he has never paid any child support.
Raising our three children has been all my responsibility since our divorce.
I struggled to find any employment that would help me support the children and myself. I had been a homemaker for seven years so I had not kept any job skills current but decided I could still do customer service.
I got my head and heart together and decided to get a job at a retail automotive store called "Advanced Auto Parts."
I knew it wasn't anything great, but I had to get back out there. At the very least, I figured I could learn a thing or two that might help me if anything went wrong with my car.
Eventually, I ended up in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. I found a terrific job for Bell Helicopter / Textron as a Technical Records Agent. I worked for Textron for three years and thought I finally had gotten my life in order.
I was happy to have landed work with such a great company, which brought stability for my children and me. That was short lived because the last two years with Bell Helicopter, I started having health problems.
I was going to different doctors on a routine basis as they tried to diagnose me. I was always in pain and felt very tired most of the time.
Finally, in 2010, I was diagnosed with Lupus (SLE), Sjogren's and Fibromyalgia autoimmune diseases. My condition started to worsen as I had serious pain and health problems.
One day I had to leave work early and got admitted to the hospital. The doctor had told me there is no cure for these autoimmune diseases, but it can be controlled with medication.
I was no longer able to work because muscles in my legs and arms could not allow me to perform basic functions. I was prescribed different types of medication but it has not made a significant difference.
It has been depressing and frustrating to have lost what I worked very hard to achieve with Textron. I have wondered when I will ever feel "normal" again.
My doctors can't seem to find a combination of medicines to help my conditions. They say it is because they are all connective tissue, muscle and nerve problems and they can't be treated with the same medicines.
They don't want me to be on a lot of medications at the same time. First, because the more medicines you are on the more side effects you face. Second, they know it is financially hard on their patients.
Due to my health and financial situations, I was recently approved for Social Security Disability in five months.
Since October of 2011, when I received my Social Security I have been unable to see a doctor unless it is in the Emergency Room.
I am only able to get "medically needy" insurance through Medicaid because I do not qualify for Medicare until 2013. This has been financially difficult for on my children and me.
When employment with Textron was final, we lost all medical benefits also. We have been without medical insurance for some time. We were recently awarded Medicaid.
I have had hospital bills from 2011 I couldn't pay. I have racked up credit card bills because it was the only way I could provide for my children.
Their father is not around financially or physically in any way. All I have is my SSDI monthly income, which doesn't help very much.
I have medications that I need and that I cannot afford, not only for myself but also for my 8 year old who has ADHD and is prescribed Vyvanse, which costs $172 a month. Thank God, I was able to get a voucher through the manufacturer for a year of free medicine.
My illnesses have caused much stress on my family and me. I can't do a lot most of time so I rely on help from my children. I would really like to provide my children with stability again.
I have to move because I can no longer afford the rent where I live. I want to buy a house but with my financial hardship, I don't know how I would be able to put up a down payment.
I feel that if I could get a grant to pay off all my medical bills and get help for a down payment for a home, I would be able to get a small enough payment where my family would be okay.