Step Out and Seek Help for What Matters to You

I just took a bold step to ask for help

I have a big goal that really matters to me. Our son is getting married in a little less than two months. We love his fiancé’ and are thrilled about their wedding. We’ve been planning a way to attend for well over a year. We live in northern California, and the wedding is in Houston, TX…2,000 miles away.

Plan A = Fly

That was a great plan until eight months ago, when my pulmonary fibrosis worsened, causing me to no longer be able to fly with my portable oxygen concentrator. There is no portable oxygen machine I can take on a plane that will provide me enough oxygen to keep my O2 at a safe level.

Plan B = Drive

My very supportive husband said it was okay, we (translation = he) would drive us to Houston from Northern California. We knew it would be tiring, taking 6 days to get there because I can only travel for ½ a day or so, before getting to exhausted. This was our plan until about a month ago when we drove to Southern California for Dave’s father’s memorial service (400 miles each way). It became evident on this trip that I could not handle a trip being driven to Houston and back. I was just too worn out, emotionally and physically.

Plan C = Me Not Go

We were devastated that I might not be able to go to the wedding. We didn’t want to give up until we scoured the internet for other possible ways to get to Houston. It’s not in my nature to give up until every stone is unturned.

Plan D = Find Another Way to Fly discovered I could charter a plane equipped with two HUGE tanks of oxygen to use on the flight to Houston. It is basically an air ambulance. A wonderful solution…but very expensive. It costs $39,000 for this round-trip flight. This includes the plane, pilots, medical person on board to monitor my oxygen levels and watch over me, the pilot’s and medic’s expenses in Houston, gas, O2, etc).

Traveling by plane exposes people to decreased air pressure and lower than normal oxygen levels. For most people, these changes are not noticeable. However, for patients like me with a serious lung condition, reduction in air pressure that happens when flying can have significant and potentially severe effects. When I fly, I have to use double the amount of supplemental oxygen I use on the ground.

Paying for this would be difficult no matter what. It is especially a challenge for us because we have spent $50,000 over the last three years for my treatments for breast cancer and pulmonary fibrosis.

We’ve sold some things on e-bay, my husband sold half of his professional library, and there are some stocks we can sell…but this cost is still out of reach.

So, last week I created a fundraiser to see if friends would like to help. You can take a look at it here:  I posted it on facebook, twitter, LinkedIn and google+ and will let others know who want to help financially. It was a lot of work to do, but worth it because this is the one event I want to attend before I eventually pass away from pulmonary fibrosis.

I know that this is heavy duty, and there is an urgency for me because of my terminal illness. The reality is that our time is precious. We need to make the most of it. If you need assistance, for something that is deeply important to you, please ask for help.

So how about you? What really matters to you?

Maybe it isn’t raising money for a big event. What is close to your heart? What do you want to accomplish? What type of impact do you want to have with family and friends? How would you like to make an impact in your church or community?

Is there a trip you want to take, or dream you want to fulfill that has deep meaning for you?

Please listen to your heart about the answers to these questions. If they require finances to accomplish, consider doing a fundraiser or asking for needed help from others in your life.

You matter. What is important to you matters. The effort to make it happen is worth it, because you are worth it!

I’d love to hear from you. What made sense or stood out to you? Are there extra steps you’ve taken or ways you’ve asked for help to accomplish a dream? Is there a goal you want to pursue?

I sure would appreciate it if you could share the link to my fundraiser on facebook, twitter, or other social media sites. Every little bit will help, and make a big difference. Thank you so much friends…

Please share this post with anyone you feel could benefit, or on social media. We’re in this together…















6 thoughts on “Step Out and Seek Help for What Matters to You

  1. Have you considered Amtrack? There’s one that goes from LA through Texas. The Sunset ltd–it has sleeping cars–perhaps you could rest and arrive refreshed to the wedding. I pray something works out for you. God bless!

    1. Hi Margaret…thanks for your comment. That is a great idea. We’ve done it before when I was using less supplemental O2. Unfortunately I’m on such a high level of O2 now, that they won’t let me bring the big machine I’m using now on the train. Thanks for thinking of other ideas!

  2. Kim what about a really nice RV? You could still have Dave and others drive, plenty of room for all the oxygen you would need and a big bed for resting. I have done Transports like this before. Even brought 2 nurses with us. And the patient was on full life support. Full time ventilator. With mom ,dad’s and others too boot. It was a wonderful adventure and very comfortable. With a bathroom and met all the travel needs. We called ahead to the hotels we stayed at to have oxygen delivered also. Worked out just fine. Call me if you would like more details. Bless you all Diane Catalano
    I’ll be continuing to pray…..

    1. Diane…thanks so much for sharing your experience with me, and all of us. That is a very creative option, and I appreciate you sharing it. It’s hard for me to explain, but traveling by car is very exhausting for me. It’s possible that if I could lie down the whole way this would make a difference. I’m concerned that I would be so exhausted by the time I got there that I wouldn’t be able to enjoy the events before the wedding, the rehearsal dinner, the wedding and reception. And the thought of driving 2000 miles home afterwards is hard to even consider. You’ve given me a good option to consider, and I appreciate you taking the time to share this wonderful option and experience with us. I will keep your number handy as a resource, and I so appreciate your prayers.

  3. I’m learning how to listen more closely to my heart, Kim. I am so appreciative for your honesty and the lessons you’ve allowed me to learn by your example. I am so glad you took a chance, asked your friends for help and dreamed big! Fear sometimes sneaks up and gets the best of me.

    1. Thanks so much Roberta! I wasn’t nervous to ask for help until after I pushed the “send” button. Then I got nervous and wondered if I did the right thing. I’m glad I pushed through my fear. Sometimes it sneaks up on me too!

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