Help Fund Kate Sholly's Healing and Recover

For: Kate Sholly & Tem Tarriktar
Nevada City, CA
Organizer: Debra Kiva
Help Fund Kate Sholly's Healing and Recover (Kate Sholly & Tem Tarriktar)
of $25,000 goal
76% Complete
Raised by 239 donors

The Story


by Julia Kelliher

Kate Sholly is a gem of a person and in serious trouble. My name is Julia Kelliher and I have known Kate for twenty years and Debra Kiva and I are appealing to you for financial support.

Kate has a spark and passion that is hard to describe. We live in a small community in Northern California and Kate has touched numerous people with her intelligent wit, dark and light humor, and big-hearted tenderness toward those in any kind of pain or need. She and her husband, Tem, have been active in political and spiritual work, hosted gatherings and meetings, all while running a successful astrology magazine that touches lives across North America and Europe. Until recently, they had numerous pets and supported animal adoption. When you meet them, individually or together, they smile and speak in a way that leaves you feeling loved and accepted exactly as you are.


About 14 years ago, Kate contracted a MYSTERIOUS digestive disorder. She had numerous tests done for the most obvious gastrointestinal diseases, blockages, and cancer, as well as the mysterious diseases such as parasites, Lyme disease, heavy metal overload etc. She has suffered through all kinds of dietary adaptations, pain after eating, cold feet, neurological discomfort, and cramps in legs. Despite her best efforts to heal emotionally and physically, she has found no definitive diagnosis, prognosis or path to healing, other than some infection that is hard to diagnose.

Kate has been left to live with painful symptoms that would get worse and then better and then worse again. She has held her own for several years, working hard to do the right things to correct the problem. But six months ago, symptoms grew much, much worse. By December, she had not been able to eat more than broth on many days, and when she did eat, even broth, it causes ongoing gas that lasted for hours at a time and doesn’t let her sleep much at night. Her weight plummeted to a point where she could not sustain her normal functions any longer due to pain and weakness in limbs.  

In mid-January, Kate began a treatment called TPN (Total Parenteral Nutrition), a nutrition delivery system that bypasses the gut and delivers nutrition directly through a vein. TPN gives her a chance to actually be nourished, have her gut rest, and gain stamina and strength. She hopes to experience a more pain-free existence and to continue to look for a diagnosis and cure for whatever is going on. Kate is in her early sixties. She is not ready to die. She has a lot to live for, and she is currently aranging for additional help with pain management.


Kate and Tem are drawing on their retirement money to fund her healing, but more is needed. They need money to hire in-home care for Kate who is too weak to be alone, so that Tem can get much needed respite and get back to attending to their business. Most importantly they need money to keep Kate alive. 

TPN is expensive, even though her insurance covers part of it. When you donate to this campaign you are giving Kate another day to live, another day to gain enough strength to endure a stint at U.C. San Francisco (in order to get more and better help) and another day to bless us with her glorious, impish, and infinitely lovely presence.

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on June 4, 2018


Posted on June 4, 2018

The latest Kate update:

Kate is still having a hard time every day with many symptoms, especially the intestinal gas, but the antidepressants are working pretty well and she is more “herself” again, although her quality of life is still very poor. Her nervous system is still too sensitive for her to use email or do much reading or to watch TV. Some of her secondary symptoms have improved (her edema is better but not gone) and her metabolism and energy seem better, possibly due to our supplementing with iodine to help her thyroid meds work better — we found out that the TPN (IV nutrition) does not include any iodine whatsoever, along with missing some key trace minerals. Now we need to continue to reduce stress and support her adrenal function. She has been on TPN since January, but this week we are trying to slowly introduce chicken bone broth (diluted in water) to see how her digestive system handles it. Just drinking water has caused belching, but she has managed to stay hydrated, partly because the TPN contains water.

Kate has had four "visceral manipulation" sessions (it is like deep massage for the stomach, diaphragm, and intestinal area) which gave her some uncomfortable cramping in her gut, but it also seems to be fixing her hiatal hernia and hopefully repairing some structural issues that were made worse by the all the stress of the last 6 months. The endocrinologist we saw in May wasn’t much help, though.

Two weeks ago we sent off a urine sample to a lab in Kansas for the Organic Acids Test, to determine if there is a particular yeast or bacteria creating a lot of the gas. Results due back now any day. And the UCSF GI department did not accept Kate as a patient, but they pointed us to a particular neuro-GI doctor at CPMC in San Francisco, and the referral has been made there and now we are awaiting scheduling to see him, possibly in 2 or 3 weeks. So watch for another update later in June. Thanks again for all your caring and support; Kate has been so down and out for so long that anything that lifts her spirits makes a huge difference.

Posted on April 30, 2018

Posted on April 30, 2018

As of April 29, Kate is benefiting from the antidepressants and is in a better frame of mind than a month ago when she started them. However, the relentless gas persists and creates a lot of discomfort, and in the last 2 weeks, just drinking water causes belching. We are hoping to try her on small amounts of broth by mouth again as soon as possible. She is still on TPN nutrition (since mid January) but not gaining much weight, and still sleeping upright on the couch every night, and her sleep is not very deep. Her edema is better lately, though, and her digestive system seems more “awake” then before.

She had to have her IV access line (called a picc line) replaced on April 23 because it had moved too much over time; that was a successful (but super-stressful) two-hour procedure at the hospital. Her most bothersome symptoms are a horribly dry throat and mouth (which prevent her from sleeping reclined), along with the gas creating a tight chest feeling, some neuropathy and “burning” sensations in arms and legs, edema, general weakness from poor nutrition, and cold feet. Her thyroid meds have been adjusted recently as well.

As you can imagine, all this over the last 7 months has worn her down emotionally and she feels completely trapped in her horrible quality of life. Although she can go for short walks, her only trips out of the house by car since November have been for medical appointments. She is interested in reading and having conversations, but her nervous system can’t handle more than brief periods. Tem is printing any encouraging emails that are sent to Kate, and she is reading them and occasionally able to respond.

The UCSF referral process is moving very slow. Right now, Kate’s doctor sent the referral off, and the GI department head at UCSF is in the process of deciding whether to see Kate; it took quite a bit of assertiveness just to make sure the UCSF doctor even looked at the referral, because Kate doesn’t have an official diagnosis of IBD, Chrons disease, or Ulcerative Colitis (she doesn’t fit into their usual boxes), and their policy is not to accept patients without one of those diagnoses. In fact, if we were to just show up at the UCSF E.R., they said they would send Kate back to her local GI docs, even though they were the ones who “fired” Kate as a patient, telling her to go to UCSF or UCDavis because they couldn’t do anything more for her here in Grass Valley with their limited testing methods. The local medical people have done a CT Scan (without contrast) a colonoscopy, an endoscopy (back in December), they also tried motility drugs and Prilosec. Kate has an appointment with an endocrinologist/internist on May 11, someone she hasn’t seen before, to address her chronic low sodium levels and hopefully get some better testing done on her overall condition.

Visiting nurses come every week to change Kate’s picc line dressing and take blood samples. Kate is also getting visits from 5 or 6 friends on a regular basis, and one of them is her regular therapist. Tem is her primary caretaker, of course. Thank you all for your kind supportive comments and for your concern and prayers.

Posted on April 4, 2018

Posted on April 4, 2018

Update: Because she has grown increasingly depressed in her highly uncomfortable and limited life, Kate is now trying an antidepressant on the advice of a well-respected local psychiatrist. After it starts working, we are hoping it will also relax her body in a way that will reduce her anxiety and her intestinal gas. After the depression is mitigated, we’ll be more easily able to leave the house to see specialists to help with her digestive problems. Thank you all for your continued good wishes and financial help.

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