Live Laugh Love

For: Helberg Family
Chicago, IL
Organizer: Family and Friends
Live Laugh Love (Helberg Family)
of $12,000 goal
53% Complete
Raised by 15 donors
This fundraiser is closed. Thank you for your support!

The Story

Fundraiser Updates

Posted on October 21, 2014

Posted on October 21, 2014

I started my fundraiser, several months ago, to help get my family out of a hole. My hole was so deep that I was on the edge of suicide. My hole was reaching inside me and swallowing me like quicksand. I had no solid ground to stand on. I was afraid. I wasn't sure how I would buy insulin. Insulin, the very thing I needed and my husband need to stay ALIVE, was out of my grasp. My insulin pump supplies were all on hold. I almost had to give up my pump, the one thing that was literally saving my life. I had trouble finding money to buy groceries some weeks. I was working, I have a full time job and I couldn't support my family’s basic needs. Life was spinning past me and I didn't know what I was going to do. I was scared beyond all belief. 

My fundraiser on Live, Laugh, Love,, has helped save me and my family. The generosity of others, of family and friends alike has made it possible for me to leave a large part of my anxiety in that big, black hole. No, I am not out of that impossible hole yet... there are still some medical bills that just haven't been paid yet. I am not sure these will get paid. A large part of my anxiety has been eased. I don't wake up in the middle of the night anymore with my heart racing, my mind foggy, wondering, where am I going to get the money to pay for my diabetes supplies this month? I don't spent every moment with Grace, consumed by the fear that I am going to have another heart attack because I cannot manage the medical bills and debt anymore. When I feel bad and I need to take a day off of work on unpaid leave, I can now because I am no longer being sucked into a pit. 

I am not free yet, there is still another $3,500 in medical debt that is unpaid but it is $6,500 less than it was three months ago. If I am unable to finish paying that last $3,500 I won't lose my home, I won't lose my medication and I won't lose my child. I was so consumed with anxiety that I was afraid I could lose Grace because I might not be able to feed us one week, it didn't happen, thanks to this fundraiser, but I had moments where I worried I wouldn't be able to pay for everything we all needed and what if someone found out and tried to take Grace... those were the kinds of thoughts that consumed me. We are much better now. We are under less financial pressure now.

I am still very sick, however, my heart is not getting better. I am having more heart pains and I am plagued with more general illnesses, aches, serious pains and overall exhaustion. I am not going to return to my former self at all. I will not have the energy and zest for life that I once embraced with open arms. My medical issues will continue as will my need for care.

Even when I raise enough money to wipe out the last five years of devastating medical debt, I will still be plagued with medical problems. I will always need insulin and diabetes supplies, I will always need 14 medications a day to keep my heart functioning. I will always need special food and to see doctors at the University of Chicago. Next January, will start a new medical year. My insurance is changing somewhat next year, it will cost me significantly more each week, my deductible is being raised and my coverage is not as good for prescriptions. I am worried already... 

If I can raise the last $3,500 I need to pay off the last of our medical debts I will start next year in a better place. I will start the year without adding to an already heavy debt load. I will start the year with only next year's medical costs, not trying to pay off the past few years. The help I have received thus far has been an incredible miracle to our family, a blessing I NEVER imagined possible. If you can give even $5 and you can share this and your friends can give $5 and so on then I can raise the final funds needed to truly, free my family from this terrible disease, this horrific year and start a path to next year that will be less rocky. 

I am still sick yes. I am essentially in the last years (year?) of my life. I would love to make those years happier, more peaceful, less fraught with anxiety and stress that destroys my heart even faster. I thank you all that have helped me, your generosity, your spirit, your kindness and LOVE are something I can never repay. Each of YOU is incredible. My LIFE is better because of YOU! 

Remember- LIVE, LAUGH, LOVE, ALWAYS!!! It will save you!

Posted on October 6, 2014

Posted on October 6, 2014

I just received an anonymous donation that I am not even sure where to start with the thanking.

The incredible journey that my family and I have been on this last year is one that I never thought I would have.
All my life I have fought with the struggles of diabetes. I watched my blood sugars, I followed diets, I exercised, in recent years I've gone on an insulin pump and continuous glucose monitoring. I spend more time in doctors’ offices some weeks than I do at work. I have always considered myself a very good diabetic. I was lucky enough to have a healthy child and still maintain my diabetes...

However, none of that stopped me from having heart disease. I have now had 3 heart attacks and I will have more. My heart disease is progressing as they thought it might and I am still trying to fight it off. I am still hopeful that I can survive a few more years but I know that I am not feeling the greatest anymore. I know that things take me longer to accomplish. I know that at 41 years old I am essentially dying.

No, I cannot predict my path. I cannot foresee what medical advancements might help me. I cannot know if the new diet and medications will help ease some of the burden my heart is under.

I do know that the less stress I have, the more access to doctors I have, the less worrying I do, that I feel better. I know that this fundraiser has helped pay bills I never would have been able to pay a few months ago. I know that I am now able to get my diabetes supplies and that I have enough to get me through until Christmas and that I will be able to afford one more shipment before the new year deductible starts and that will carry us through until next March or April.

The donation I received today truly puts me in a better position. It will clears up some major hospital bills and pays for insulin for a few months now. Thank you does not describe what I feel. Helping others is a gift that you only understand if you've been able to give to someone that desperately needed it.

My family and I were/are desperate. I was at the end of my rope. I was scared, worried and truly did not know how to cope, how to get out the tremendous financial hole I was in.

You do not know desperation until you cannot afford the very medicine you need to LIVE, you do not know fear until you are eating crackers for dinner because you can't afford anything else, you do not know pain until you are told you've had a 3rd heart attack and you aren't going to get any better.

I want to thank the people that have been there. I want the people that have helped me to know that your kindness, your generosity, your spirit, your goodness have truly made a difference to me, Jeff and Grace. You gave and in doing so have given me a better chance to live with less suffering.

I love and thank you. You did not judge me. You did not send me terrible notes asking how I could do this fundraiser. You gave what you could and in doing so helped a family survive in a world they were not able to quite deal with...

Thank you from The Helberg Family. Thank you for giving me more good time with my daughter, the best part of my life. Thank you for caring and for loving me and for giving of yourself.

Keep living; keep laughing and most of all keep loving those around you! We only have this once chance!!!

Posted on September 29, 2014

Posted on September 29, 2014

I know I haven't updated for a while and I apologize. You have been such wonderful family and friends and I don't mean to be out of touch... I have unfortunately had a lot going on.

I am trying desperately to finish my college education. I know it may not make sense why I would push myself to work full time while also attending classes but finishing college is one of my dreams and it is one that I can do.

I am not only finishing college so that I can have possibly get a better job in my remaining months/years and leave Grace a little more (my life insurance is based on my yearly income) but also so that Grace will see what hard work can do, so that she will possibly understand how important it is to finish college and a dream...

I realize that many people can succeed in the world without a college degree and I know many intelligent people that opted not to go to school for a four year degree. However, I truly value education. I value the discipline to studying and the actual knowledge that you receive from those courses. I enjoy learning new things and then being able to apply them in my career. I find it stimulating and mentally rewarding to get straight A's and to have more things in my brain to discuss.

Grace is a learner like me; she enjoys school and is always asking questions. I have had one decent job in my entire life and I have been lucky to get as far as I have at my company with only an Associate's Degree. BUT the fact is that I would have gone farther had I finished school ten years ago or twenty. I wouldn't be facing an untimely, early death while stuck in huge debt if I'd finished school when I had the chance. I have no excuses for screwing up my early life... and I am now paying the price dearly with my own life!

My health is getting worse. My blood work shows that my heart is getting weaker and that I've possibly had another heart attack...I know you are thinking what?????? It is possible to have very mild heart attacks and not know it. It is possible to have these minor heart attacks and the damage be internal and not really feel much pain; since I am in CONSTANT pain anyway and much of it chest pain a mild heart attack may not feel like much more than my usual angina attacks.

Since it was likely a mild heart attack and since my lab results are getting worse, my heart disease is progressing... there isn't anything they can do right now. They know I don't have a major blockage which is what would cause an immediate, fatal heart attack. But the mild heart attacks cause a weakening of the heart and the damage long term will be fatal.

I am resigned to my fate now. There isn't much else that can be done. I am on another new diet and more medicines but I am dying, slowly and inevitably my life is in it's final months/year/years...??? Maybe... I hope it's years... there isn't any way to tell.

I have to finish school. I cannot die without having done this, without showing Grace that even in the worst of life's trials you can accomplish one great thing, one thing that was part of your heart and soul.

I wish you all well today. Get your heart checked, please if you are having any kind of pains or your blood work shows high cholesterol; see a doctor that specializes in LIPIDS. You can help yourself before it's too late.

Share my post, share my words with people you love, encourage them to get their numbers checked. And if you can spare a few extra dollars this week, it would be appreciated far more than you can ever imagine. The bills are still piling up; the medical debt is still atrocious...

Take Care my Friends...find a reason to Live, Love and Laugh today and every day!!!!!

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