Let's keep Jackie's heartbeating, keep sharing! Thank-you!

$21,597raised of $75,000 goal

Beneficiary: Jacqueline Austin (Jackie) Organizer: Cera McGinn, Austin Hall, Jon-Michael Hall and much love and support from Callie Davis

FOR A MOST RECENT UPDATE READ THE ENTRY FROM OCTOBER 27,2014...also, each day brings new strength. It will take time to get back in the saddle but I am sure I will. I am working a team of healers to rebuild my GI system and the expenses continue to rage each month. 
Walking the path of medical debt bankruptcy. Humilitaing and deeply depressing. I am hoping for a miracle that will change the journey. Thank-you for your help so far, you have kept me alive.
Thank-you for any help you may give, it will help me start over.
With gratitude, Jackie


For those of you who may not know me, I am 53 and a proud Mom of adult children that I adore and deeply admire. I live in the beautiful mountains in Asheville, NC.  I am primarily a decorative painter/mural artist who ran two small businesses prior to this health decline. I would describe myself as someone who loves to laugh, finds pleasure in the simple things, and I consider my friends and family my greatest fortune. I enjoy competitive rowing, hiking, living in the mountains, making art, making new friends, puppy breath and anything that involves being in nature.  I’d like to tell you my story.

Four years ago, I was diagnosed with severe iron deficiency anemia and internal bleeding that is hiding somewhere in my gastrointestinal tract. During periods of intense bleeding, simple activities like going up a flight of stairs is a challenge and carrying out routine activities becomes completely overwhelming, physically and emotionally. Being up on ladders working as a decorative painter came to a halt, and I have since had to close my business. I have taken on part-time jobs that requires less physical effort and does not completely deplete my reduced energy.  My economic well being has crumbled since this strange health malady has come to pay me a visit.

The health adventure journey:
I have been repeatedly poked, pricked, prodded, put to sleep, x-rayed, cat-scanned, have swallowed cameras, drank nuclear medicine, have been in and out of the hospital for days at a time and have swallowed gallons of nasty surgical prep that tastes like slimy sea water over and over again.
I am grateful for all the medical efforts, but after thousands of dollars in testing, the Doctors have no answers as to where this elusive bleeding is hiding.  I am a patient of 8 different doctors and a renowned teaching hospital. 
I have tried mulitiple alternative measures; I have seen healers, had crowns replaced thinking maybe I had metal poisoning, I have rubbed creams, swallowed homeopathics, have even been given herbs that have stopped bleeding in race horses! I have drank food for months at time. They all came up empty.I have also been on my knees begging for healing.

Currently, the only way to keep my blood oxygenated and heart pumping, is by getting regular iron infusions. Each infusion takes about 5 hours.  My Oncologist told me frankly that without the infusions my heart will stop. The iron infusions do give me small reprieves. Unfortunately the bleeding never stops and it is just a matter of time before my blood numbers tank and I am forced to go back for iron. I like to think of myself as tenacious and strong. Most of the time no one knows what is going on behind my smile.I have days when the charade works but there are other days that can be dark and unyeilding. Only my closest friends and family know the extent of my tears and struggle. 

When the iron levels run out, I am often hidden away, awash in tears, sleeping a bunch and cave into feeling paralyzed by fear.I am blessed with an abundance of freinds and family who have cheered me on throughout this journey. I so desperately want to be healed.

So here I am, writing to you on this You Caring site feeling deeply humbled and hopeful at the same time.

I will need to be iron infused for the rest of my life to stay alive if they can't figure out where I am bleeding.  I am deeply grateful for the iron drips, I would also be most grateful to get my life back and not need a drip at all! 

Today 6/17/14, it occured to me I should update the game plan. Since we launched this site a year ago the journey has gone in many directions. I have a new Dr. in  Hendersonville ( Dr.Caserio) actually listened to my story and believed me when I told him I thought there was more than one malady at work inside my body. He ordered new tests and discovered I was carrying 2 lethal bacterias that would have ended my life had they not been discovered! I was hoping it was the cure. It was not, but hey, I am still here and the focus can now go back to the search to find the bleeding. I am no longer persueing Mayo Clinic. The new Doctor along with a fantastic Naturopathic Doctor are searching far and wide to help me. The focus for care remains here in Asheville but I am willing to go ANYWHERE I can get help.
Your donations will help on so many levels. They will help ease the crushing expenses I have incurred this far.They will allow me to continue to search even if it means finding a specialist in another country. Please share this site for me, email the url, tweet, flick, post, Pin it or send it out to what ever else is out there!

Thank you for taking the time to get to know me during this challenging time. If you have made it this far without totally glazing over....I would encourage you to watch the video Cera made for me. Just click on the picture of me and the great horned owl. Thank-you Cera for the beautiful work.
I look forward to pursuing healing hand-in-hand with you.  I will keep you posted! 
On a personal note...paypal sent me a 1099 last year for donations. My accountant did not know what to do as the donations are for medical expenses not work.  It turned into a big mess. My accountant encouraged checks when possible written directly to me to avoid the mess the 1099 caused last year. Either way....
With love and gratitude, Jackie
In addition to Pay Pal, donations can also me mailed by check to:
Jackie Austin
P.O Box 893
Asheville,NC 28801


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