“One of the biggest problems with brain injuries - because if somebody looks fine, you assume that they are fine,”~~Lee Jenkins, executive director of the Brain Injury Association.
I survived an acute toxic chemical exposure that left me brain injured, blind, and dependent on supplemental oxygen for more than 5 years. MD's said I'd never see again. I CAN SEE now! Some say I'm a miracle. I’ve taken a lot of hits in my life and always bounced back. I’ve always been the “I can do it myself” kid, even when I was blind. More used to giving and helping others instead of asking for help. Truth be told, I’m having a very hard time bouncing back right now. I still deal with residual neurological injuries, chronic fatigue syndrome and multiple chemical sensitivity. Staying functionally well does take ongoing maintenance.
Every 2-3 years I need to have a couple months' worth of holistic treatments with trained health professionals to manage the long-term effects of the brain and neurological injuries of the toxic chemicals that once decimated me. These sessions are the key for me to have more of my life back. Life happened. I went without these treatments for more years than I'd hoped.
3 years ago I'd finally been able to restart these holistic treatment sessions. The good new the country I'm actually in now (Ecuador,) it's much less expensive than in the USA. The bad news: I was on my way home, many hours away, after the first of this series of sessions when my equipment bag was stolen: it contained my laptop, cameras, mikes, cables, an external hard-drive with 5 years work on it!
It also contained a brand new smart phone, my spare glasses, and a huge chunk of cash I'd saved to buy furniture, stove & fridge as well as pay for the rest of the holistic medicine treatments. With that money gone I was unable to continue treatment. My health suffered. It took me a year of begging, borrowing and renting computer time to just stay in touch with people, with friends urging me the whole time until I finally buckled and posted a fundraiser.
While I didn't get nearly as much as I needed, I got just enough to have a friend coming to visit Ecuador from Los Angeles buy and bring me a new laptop so I could once again communicate regularly online. Unfortunately, later in 2017 several major hurricanes hit and afterwards so many people were posting fundraisers online that I took it down. At that time I convinced myself that others needed help more than me.
But WHY is it I always figure that others need help more than me? I lived with no stove, oven or fridge—just a hot plate— for 2 years before I got a even a fridge! Now, in 2019, I'm still struggling. At my age (almost 64) I actually have a worse living standard than when I was a poor student or even as a literal starving artist.
For many years, as a brain-injury surviver with environmental illnesses, I’ve lived a virtual life, managing a Natural Wellness Page (Zeeva the Art of Wellness) on Facebook, doing research and helping people for free. I was getting ready to launch a website, to share my stories, stories of other 'miraculous healing,' and real health information of a kind that social media is now censoring, that would help me earn the little extra monthly that would supplement my very small disability pension-- that basically covers just my rent, my food, and my internet-- when my 7 year old smart phone died.
I now have NO working phone, I still need new glasses, my computer needs maintenance and sadly, I do as well - both medical AND dental. Not to mention, I’m still living without an oven! As hard as it is for me to admit I need help, I now have no choice but to send out a call for donations so I can begin to take back my life again. With the first funds that come in, I'll buy a smartphone--today's phones have pretty decent cameras, so I'll be able to make vid's like the one you see I made some years ago to teach and inspire others to beat supposedly unbeatable odds! I'll able to schedule and travel for the medical treatments I need to come back to health again, get my computer repaired, some crucial equipment replaced and get my websites back up, so I can share valuable information and the stories (mine AND others') to help others know it's possible to fight for your health and WIN!
Every little bit helps, folks. The amount I'm asking is to deal with present health issues and get better instead of a continued downturn, to get basic maintenance and repairs for my computer, and the few extra pieces of equipment I need to bounce back again. If everyone who I’ve helped or inspired over the years or follows my social media pages gave even a dollar or two, I know I can get back on my feet again. I'll be able to get stronger physically so I can help others much more than I am now. This last March was Brain Injury Awareness month and so many people who read my Wellness Page on Facebook contacted me for help, for support, for information, I realized they are still not getting the help and information they need from their MD's that I could provide!
Please help if you can, with whatever you can, and please share this campaign as well.
I AM grateful for every little bit. Thank you!