"I just want you to know that you are loved, " Nancy said to her physical therapist on the phone. She had just invited him to an event that she and her husband were attending this fall.
As a family, we celebrate with Nancy each day for all the she gives us and everyone she meets: her love, her humor, her encouragement and her gift of healing as a nurse and a woman of faith.
Nancy became paralyzed from the neck down in an accident in the summer of 1999 while she served as the medical director for the Peace Corps in the country of Mauritania in West Africa. She has defied the odds in living so long as a quadriplegic person. Her attitude and love of life combined with her care at home has kept her going through the last 18 years, along with visits to doctors and hospitalizations for acute illnesses when needed.
Nancy's greatness of heart seems to grow stronger with every year-- yet time is taking its toll on her body and her physical needs are much greater now. In the fall of 2016 she was hospitalized with a pressure ulcer, her first in 18 years. The challenges of the ulcer have meant she has had to stay in bed for almost all of 2017. She no longer gets up in her wheelchair to sit at the dining room table to read the Bible or magazines using her mouth stick. She no longer goes out to do errands, see a play or watch a local baseball game. The only trips now are to the doctor, church or an occasional event. In spite of Nancy's increased incapacitation, her spirit is strong. She loves us and she loves living.
We do not receive financial assistance through Medicare for Nancy's daily care including day, night and now overnight shifts. All of our care workers are privately paid by donations from people who are committed to keeping Nancy at home where she has a much higher quality of life than she would have in any long-term care facility.
In the last year, the cost of Nancy's care needs has increased from $30,000 to $60,000 per year. This fall we will spend the last of our personal and family savings and will run out of money to provide Nancy's care unless we are able to replenish the Nancy Lower Fund.
Will you join us in supporting Nancy at this time in her life? Will you celebrate her love of living and her gratitude at being able to live at home with us?
We have been blessed by all the love and support we have received over the years from friends and family including the gifts given through youcaring.com. We hope Nancy's story inspires you to support this amazing woman, and her crusade to live life to the fullest in the place she loves the most-- her home. Join us now!