George and Carol have been married for 63 years. Carol just celebrated her 82nd birthday. She didn’t go out to dinner with George or have friends and family over. Instead, she sat through 4.5 hours of dialysis and then came home exhausted from the procedure and sat in her chair to rest. She’s been receiving dialysis treatments for so long now that the staff showered Carol with balloons on her day. That was the highlight of Carol’s 82nd birthday and she loves to share the story of the joy that came over her when she walked in to see the balloons. Carol is also diabetic so there was no cake. George’s memory has deteriorated and he forgot it was her day. He was confused at first when he saw the balloons.
George and Carol moved into their home thirty years ago when the house was only a few years old. They were comfortable and enjoyed their neighbors. George and Carol’s small home has started showing signs of age and is in need of some minor modifications so that they can access the garage and outside. Their neighborhood has changed a great deal, but they seem unaware of the changes because they are trapped inside their home much of the time now.
George recalls how much he enjoyed yard work and gardening. He shared about how they enjoyed their large deck and all the foliage that surrounded it. George can’t do yardwork anymore as he uses a walker and cane to get around. George and Carol can’t even get out on that deck anymore. The deck is falling in and it’s too dangerous for them to venture out onto it now. The back and side yard that used to be colorful and inviting is now overgrown and looks like a jungle.
Carol demonstrates how she gets in and out of the garage door so that she can get to their washer and dryer. Because she has to use a cane, she finds it hard to get the cane and the laundry down one step and then back up one step to load and unload the machines. “It all used to be so easy”, she laments.
George and Carol have many health problems but feel they are lucky compared to their adult daughter. She, too, has diabetes and has lost five fingers and a toe during the last year. She cannot help them and it’s getting harder for them to help themselves in the home they love and never dreamed they could not maintain on their own.
Carol and George need our help. They need the old deck torn off and a new, smaller deck installed. They need a small ramp at the front door so they can get outside for medical appointments and shopping and they also need a free standing deck in the garage so Carol can continue to do laundry on her own. A few modifications and this couple can continue to live out their life in their home as they have always envisioned. Oprah, Ellen, can you hear this plea? Will YOU step up to help us help them? Please donate. www.hartfelt.org