On 26 September 2016, at age 52, my partner, Reynel, was diagnosed with ovarian cancer and a week later she had the first severe symptoms of Rheumatoid Arthritis (RA).
For two months she was bed bound and totally dependent on her family and I (her primary caregiver) to care for even her most basic needs until finally she was diagnosed with severe RA - an autoimmune disease for which there is no cure - and got the proper medical treatment and medication.
She had a full hysterectomy to remove the cancerous growth and then had chemotherapy for cancer for a period of six months. She is prescribed chemo tablets for RA as well, which, according to her Rheumatologist, she will be on for the rest of her life. She is less dependent on us for day to day living but cannot walk unassisted due to the severity of the RA in her knees and more so the left knee.
A little history from before she was diagnosed with cancer:
She was in a car crash at the age of 28 left her in a wheelchair for 6 months and on crutches for 5 years. She could not continue doing any work where she had to stand or walk around.
In 2010 she had a bacterial infection in her right lower leg and almost lost her leg. She developed calcification of the tissue in her lower legs and this causes blood supply to her lower legs to be bad. Due to this condition knee replacements are not advised.
The here and the now:
Her treatments are at a state hospital which is a 4 hour drive from home. For the previous 7 months she had to travel to the hospital once a month to see the Rheumatologist, Gynecologist and Oncologist. From now on she needs to make the trip once every two months.
The financial strain is enormous. Travel costs are not the only expense but also accommodation and food. Reynel tries to make ends meet by making paintings but her painting income is directly influenced by RA and the amount of pain in her wrists and fingers. With flare-ups she just cannot paint as she cannot hold a brush.
To top all this, our car broke down and she cannot get to the hospital or even shops. She lives in a rural area where, with the exception of café’s which stocks the most basic supplies, the nearest pharmacist and other shops are a 30km drive. She is stuck at home with no transport.
We need your help. All our combined funds are depleted. Neither she, nor I have the capacity to take on these additional expenses without outside help. We have given everything we had and made debt to get her to Cape Town and back for treatments.
- We need to get the car fixed
- We need to get her to her appointments in Cape Town for 2017 on 7 June, 8 August and 4 October, and have expenses for fuel, accommodation and meals.
The expenses amounts to a total of 3 000 US dollars and is totally out of our reach. Please consider supporting this fundraising campaign.
We so desperately want to see her get healthy as her family, friends and I love her so very much. Thank you very much for considering supporting Reynel and contribute to her fundraising campaign.