Hello my name is Melanie. I'm a small town girl originally from the east coast who has resided in the twin cities area for the past three years. I am very blessed and fortunate to say that I am the proud mother of a 4 & 1/2 year old daughter and I am also employed full-time by a great company. My family means the WORLD to me. However, when you're a thousand miles away for your immediate family members, the most important of them being very ill in health, it can take quite the toll on you mentally/emotionally/spiritually. My mother has struggled with many underlying health conditions the last several years but they've gotten increasingly worse over the last three. My mother is on 24/7 oxygen due to respiratory issues, has kidney cancer, a history of blood clots and DVT, and etc. She is too sick to fly so her coming to me is not an option and the only means that my daughter and I can get there to see her is by flying. My immediate family back on the east coast is my mother and brother. Unfortunately, no one in my immediate family owns a home and has the extra space needed for two additional people there for a couple weeks, so to be able to go back home to see and spend time with her alone requires me to need lodging at a motel. That, at the cheapest rate available in itself will run me $700. I'm thankful to work for a good company where my job is protected under FMLA when needed, however it does not fully compensate me when out on a leave of absence. In addition, I need to be able to keep my rent and bills up to par while I'm away so I have a residence to come back to when I return. It's definitely been difficult trying to wonder how I am going to balance all of this, but one thing I do know is that any time spent with my mother (and time she can spend with her grandchild) is precious. Please help in any way you possibly can. I cannot express enough gratitude for any and all support offered. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.