Courtney is a 30 year old nurse that was born and raised on the east coast of Massachusetts . She's recently written a blog about her experience with Toxic Mold Illness which you can view at http://livelaughbehealthy.com/ . We are asking your support to help her overcome Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome, an illness that is greatly misunderstood and caused by long term exposure to indoor toxic mold. It is better known as "Sick Building Syndrome". It brings with it debilitating symptoms such as extreme hypersensitivities and toxic reactions to even minute exposures to mold spores everywhere which has made it extremely difficult to find tolerable housing, brain fog, muscle weakness, chest tightness, difficulty breathing, skin irritation, debilitating chronic fatigue and many others. She has been living with this now for the past six and a half years.
It is through her strong faith in God I know she will one day be well and be able to pursue her nursing career using all she's learned in this journey to help enlighten others which may have no idea as to why they are suffering, as all too many doctors are so quick to prescribe medications and are unable to get to the root source of the problem.
Before moving into a beautifully newly renovated loft apartment six years ago which was once an old textile mill, she was employed full-time, made friends easily and appreciated all she was blessed with. Not long after moving into this apartment her health started to spiral drastically downward. She found herself constantly exhausted not able to do much more than necessary to get herself ready for work. Even the simplest of tasks became overwhelming and left her to spend the majority of her day confined to her bed and eventually she had to leave her job.
Still unaware of the high mold levels in the apartment and now unemployed she did the unimaginable and enrolled herself into a nursing program and although it was one of the most difficult times of her life, by the grace of God and her determination to make a sucessfull career for herself she completed the course and currently holds her LPN license. Unfortunately she was only able to work for one week before collapsing and fighting desperately for her health and searching for the reasons why she had become so ill.
While she was living at this home she was diagnosed with Lyme disease and put on an aggressive protocol of antibiotics, antimalarials, etc that only continued to worsen her condition greatly, due to the propensity that antibiotics have to encourage internal fungal growth and further suppress the immune system. (To this day she still tests positive for Lyme disease and it hasn't been appropriately handled yet due to the mold still effecting her immune system.) It was around this time she learned of toxic mold and how it emits gases that can cause severe illness in certain people that have what is known as an HLA genotype. People with this genetic predisposition are unable to rid their bodies of both Lyme and mold toxins, as well as other environmental and chemical toxins. She unfortunately is one of the unlucky ones that has these genes. This information lead us to test our apartment and we received positive results for multiple dangerous levels of toxic molds. After educating ourselves of proper decontamination procedures we spoke with a toxic mold specialist and decided it was best to move at once and leave behind almost all of our personal possessions except for one tote full of non porous items such as pictures and jewelry. It felt as if we had been in a fire and lost everything. Insurance did not cover any of the loss.
She bounced around for the next couple of months sick and discouraged of all she was going through having nowhere to settle down and unsure of how to begin treating an illness we knew very little about. We had no choice but to move back into my ex-husbands' home to be able to afford the many out of pocket doctors visits and lab work testing necessary which totaled in the tens of thousands of dollars. Although it was the last place I wanted to be I stayed to help support my daughter there for the next two years. She thankfully was able to see doctors during this time that confirmed a diagnosis of Chronic Inflammatory Response Syndrome aka Toxic Mold Poisoning.
She spent her time educating herself of this illness speaking with many different doctors and networking with many others in the same situation as herself. After being out of the loft apartment for 2 years and not seeing any improvement in Courtney's condition, we decided to test the house as we had learned that one cannot heal the body from mold while still living in a home with any mold. In fact, it is very common for the Mold Toxicity/CIRS patient to no longer be able to tolerate ANY molds. Upon receiving the results from my ex-husbands' house and speaking with multiple real estate agents that were unable to help us find mold free housing that matched the requirements of her doctor (no basement, only 3-8 years old, no central A/C, etc.), there seemed no other alternative except to drive to the west coast in hopes the drier climate would bring relief of the symptoms and that she would be able to find tolerable housing. We had also heard from many people that they were able to heal better once moving to a drier climate. Once again we had to leave behind any items we had acquired.
I quit my job and drove with her to Arizona as I knew she could not make the journey alone. We spent the majority of this time in Arizona practicing "extreme avoidance" of mold and chemical toxins while looking for tolerable housing which we were unable to find due to her level of toxicity. The majority of the funds already raised were used to support Courtney's search for tolerable housing, organic food/mold free diet and treatments/doctors visits out west. The only housing she was able to tolerate and did not make her sick were those that were specially made for those with these extreme sensitivities, none of which were available to be rented. We ended up mostly camping for eight months after being unable to find anything we could live in. However, the camping was short lived because she could not tolerate the chemicals in the tents and needed a truck and aluminum cargo trailer in order to do it properly/long term. We decided to return to Massachusetts in June of 2015 after having to put the car, which was a lease into storage due to it having been a major source of continued exposure from cross contamination from her fathers house. After returning Courtney's health quickly spiraled downward once again.
On a daily basis she still experiences many difficult and debilitating symptoms such as severe chronic fatigue, difficulty breathing, brain fog, muscle weakness and pain, and extreme hypersensitivity to even minute amounts of mold toxins (which greatly worsens all of the previously mentioned symptoms). She is currently unable to work and has no income other than her disability payment she receives every month and is thankful for but unfortunately covers very little of her monthly costs.
Courtney has recently seen Dr Donald Dennis in Georgia where she was diagnosed with mold colonization in her tissues and he has prescribed her a treatment plan but also instructed her to leave Massachusetts due to the climate there being very difficult for most Toxic Mold sufferers to heal in as well as the lack of newer/tolerable housing due to the fact that its a historic area and many if not all rentals are very old there. He also stressed the importance of being in a mycotoxin free environment in order for treatments to work properly. Courtney recently moved to Florida with a friend and is renting a room there and thankfully has improved some due to being able to be outside mostly all the time however is still having a very difficult time tolerating her current living environment. We are hopeful that with proper treatment Courtney will begin to heal and have the life she's always wanted.It is with my greatest gratitude that if you decide to help fund Courtney on her journey to wellness and/or to please find it in your heart to simply share this fundraiser to help her reach her goal, I promise that your thoughtful actions will not be unappreciated and you will in turn touch the life of not only Courtney but all she promises to help encourage in their own healing journey. All funds raised will be used for her medical treatments, doctors appointments, a healthy organic diet which is extremely important for healing, and any other necessities for healing such as air purifiers, medications, supplements, oxygen tank (part of dr dennis' protocol), etc. It is her ultimate goal to be able to build a non toxic tiny home on a small plot of land however we do not have the funds for that as most don't that are dealing with these illnesses.
I will leave you with what I feel are some of the most informative sites I have come across in hopes to give you a better understanding of what Courtney is dealing with and is genetically affecting up to 24% of today's population in some way. http://livelaughbehealthy.com/
There is also an excellent documentary titled "Black mold documentary" which can be found here:http://blackmoldexposure.com/
This documentary gives an excellent depiction of what it is like living with this illness and was produced by someone that has experinced it personally.