Monday, September 16, 2019

Don't Worry Be Happy!


This is totally me right now... $65,000 might be a lot of money to raise, but I TOTALLY know it's going to happen! Thank-you! 

"And my God shall supply all your need according to His riches in glory by Christ Jesus." Philippians 4:19

Saturday, September 14, 2019

HSCT in Mexico? Is it clean?

You have been wondering... is this place clean enough for such a medical procedure? It's an important question! So, I brought in a first-hand expert, my friend Jodi, who had HSCT done there less than a year ago! :)


Thursday, September 12, 2019

Ways to Give :)




I am so humbled and grateful that you all have been so generous helping me to get this treatment. In just one week, you have already raised more than $11,000! You have kicked this first week of with a bang! Thank-you! Please continue to share too... it really IS making a difference!

To make things easier, here is a brief summary of giving options:

▪︎ https://givetaxfree.org/campaigns/rebeccas-hsct-adventure/
▪︎ https://www.gofundme.com/f/rebecca039s-hsct-adv
▪︎ PayPal:  Rebeccashsctadventure@gmail.com
▪︎ Snail Mail: Message me for address... the internet is too sketchy to put it here. :)

The online options are the easiest ways to give. Some of you have asked about "their cut," so yes. They do both take a percentage of donations received. To me, this is expected. They need to run their site & I'm thankful for the options.

If you would like to avoid that & make sure that all of your money is used for HSCT, you may use either PayPal or snail mail it. Please remember, that you will not be able to receive a tax deduction this way. I am personally not picky at all! I am just incredibly thankful!

Another fun way to give & get something for yourself at the same time, is by ordering Pampered Chef through the party my friend offered to do. A percentage of the sales will go into my fund! Party ends on September 30th. Order here: 
https://www.pamperedchef.com/party/rebeccatodd0908 [Local peeps: There will be a show at my house on Saturday, September 28th.]

Thank you so so very much for your generosity, both with your money and prayers! You all are the ones who will make this happen! ThAnK-yOu!
▪︎ https://rebeccashsctadventure.blogspot.com/

Monday, September 9, 2019

You Have Been Granted Top-Secret Clearance! :)


Top-Secret Clearance! That's right, folks... yooou have been granted top-secret clearance to A Day in the Life of Rebecca. I have to tell you something... I honestly did not want to write this. This is something that I try not to show people at all (I don't want pity & I don't like to share the negative). Only my family sees it. But, I'm feeling the need to be really transparent here. You can't really understand what's going on, if I don't tell you, right?

This is really hard for me. You know me... I don't like to dwell on the negative or the difficult stuff.  It's just the way God made me... but it's also a form of self-preservation. If I dwelt on the negative, it would beat me down, and I would be a very sad and despondent person. Who wants to live their life like that? Not me anyway! To me... MS is just a thing. It might make things stinky or more difficult, but whatever.

So, today...
Six days a week, I usually do The MS Gym with my buddy group via video conferencing, at 10:30, 12:30 & 2:30. I've learned that movement is medicine, so while there are some days it doesn't completely work out, I'm committed to this. In fact, I'm sure I would be bed-ridden right now, if it weren't for The MS Gym!

I was struggling. Spasticity was crazy. So, I decided to try something, specifically for spasticity in the toes, ankles & legs. I was very thankful our daughter was home, because I needed her to come help me get up twice, because my body was just not doing what I needed it to. At the 10:30 session with my buddy group, I'm sitting in my scooter, because it's more stable than my Wheelie Walker. I couldn't even pull my foot up onto my opposite leg to try & rub it out. Argh. Need Elodie's help a couple more times. The struggle is real today.

Around 11:15, I realize that I forgot to take my meds earlier, which also helps with spasticity. Thank goodness. It's not actually more progression. This is also good news, because I wasn't sure how I was going to take our daughter to her orthodontist appointment. That's why she's home today. I couldn't rely on being able to pick her up from school for the appointment, so we adapt. Anyhow, big day!  She was getting her braces on, hubby had a meeting, so I had to be there.

Thankfully, our daughter knows how to load the scooter onto the lift & tighten it down. All I had to do was get into the driver's seat of our SUV. After 10 minutes (maybe it was 6 - it felt like forever), my daughter's help, some tears of frustration (me), & my daughter cheering me on saying,  "You can do it Mommy! I believe in you!", I finally made it into the driver's seat. Thank goodness, lifting my leg two feet in the air uses different muscles than driving & I was then fine.

After we got back, a dear friend dropped by unexpectedly. I love when she does that!
๐Ÿ˜€ MS can affect your breathing & vocal chords. It does for me. I guess the day had been more stressful than I even realized, because I was very hoarse. This is new. As the stress went away, so did the hoarseness. Just the normal slur now. Talked about how I wish our kids didn't have to do so much for me. More tears. My ongoing prayer is that the Lord uses this for their good. My friend offered to help with a couple of fundraising things. That took a huge load off! She also prayed with me! What a blessing!

Hubby will probably help me into bed tonight... maybe even turn on the electric toothbrush, because sometimes that's just super hard.

Okay. That's it. I will probably never say anything about this stuff again. It's just life. It happens. It is what it is. But, you can see a little more of why I am trying to get this treatment. HSCT is it. There are no other options.

If you feel led to help make this happen (ThAnK-yOu!!):
▪︎ https://givetaxfree.org/campaigns/rebeccas-hsct-adventure/
▪︎ https://www.gofundme.com/f/rebecca039s-hsct-adv

Saturday, September 7, 2019

Question-Answer Game


Let's play a game! We'll call this the Question-Answer game! I'm going to guess some questions you might have and then answer them! (See? You don't even have to do anything!)

Q1: Why do you need the money?
A: It's not covered by insurance 

Q2: Is your HSCT already scheduled?
A: It sure is!

Q3: When is it scheduled?
A: I leave on Sunday, February 2nd & it starts the next day.

Q4: Okay, so when do you need the money?
A: I'm so glad you asked! The money needs to be paid in full, 2 months before I go. So, it needs to be turned in by December 2nd.

Q5: Are you doing anything else to fundraise?
A: Yes... we need a lot of money, right? So, there are several ideas in the works just trying to figure out how to implement them all though. I've never done this fundraising thing before, so I'm figuring things out as I go.

Q6: What kind of stuff are you planning & when?
A: Just brainstorming right now... upcoming events should hopefully include handmade beaded necklaces, fun t- shirts, Mexican coffee, Mexican food, Fun Walk/Run, Pampered Chef, & our daughter's best friend just told us about her & her younger sister having a lemonade stand. And maybe, just MAYBE our son will shave his head for money. Really not sure about that one though. But stay tuned! It needs to all happen soon!

Was your question answered here? What other questions do you have? Write them here & I'll be sure to answer those questions too!
๐Ÿ˜€

Thursday, September 5, 2019

What's Going On?




My Journey with Multiple Sclerosis…And What I Hope to do Next, with YOUR Help!

What do homeschooling, holistic medicine, teaching a Sunday school class, and fundraising to travel to a foreign country for a medical treatment not available in the U.S have in common? If you answered absolutely nothing at all, that would be... incorrect! However, if you intuitively answered that they were random things that Rebecca 'told God' in the last few years, "No way, not a chance, never!" to, but God then said, "Haha! You're really funny. That's what you think," then you would be absolutely 100% correct & you win the prize of great self-satisfaction! ๐Ÿ˜

I'm in the midst of a twist. As you know, I have Multiple Sclerosis (MS). There's no cure for it, & I'm totally fine with that... "It's all good!" [Yes, I totally just quoted myself there.] I've done so many different things to manage my symptoms over the past 11 years... diet, daily MS drug injections, an alternative compounded med, holistic treatments... In fact, I went from 100% holistic all the way to big pharma [Lemtrada], which can be considered (for the ease of an uber quick description) a half-dose chemotherapy. Anyone who infuses Lemtrada, hopes that it will be their last MS med ever. Most "Lemmies" go through two rounds of the treatment, one year apart. I've done three. In fact, I was only the second person my MS Specialist had ever approved for a third round. I've experienced benefits from each round, however, other symptoms continue to progress.  I am currently in the secondary progressive stage of MS and things are getting more difficult to manage, both for me as well as for my husband and family.  I don’t want to sound defeated, because I am NOT, but MS has taken me on a very difficult journey and I have been told I won’t recover what I have lost.  I am looking to stop future progression (which could make life even more difficult) from happening!

So, all of this brings us to this moment... as of right now, there is one more opportunity to halt the progression of my MS… and, it is just in time, as my disability score is at the top of what is accepted for this treatment. It comes in the form of something called HSCT (Hematopoietic Stem Cell Transplant). HSCT uses high-dose chemotherapy to ablate my immune system. My previously harvested stem cells are then reinserted to help with the recovery of obliteration. HSCT has actually been around for decades and has been used for cancer and other autoimmune conditions. However, it isn't until the last few years that it has also been used for MS. While there are a few limited (extremely expensive, $120,000-$200,000) trials for it going on inside of the United States (for which I have found out I don't qualify), there are other options available... They do require a stamp in the passport & the entire fee for the month-long procedure paid in full, two months ahead of time. 

Enter Clinรฌca Ruiz, in Monterrey, Mexico. The efficacy & safety of their HSCT protocol is amongst the top in the world. The cost for having HSCT done there, plane tickets, etc… is $65,000. That is the fundraising goal we are taking on! I have to be real transparent here... we don't have that money. Okay, we've had to spend a lot of money on my health over the years & we don't have anything extra for this. So, in order for this treatment to be a possibility, I would need to raise money for the treatment, as well as money for the airfare, food, other fees, and even tips for staff at the treatment center. As you might imagine, a caregiver is required for this treatment. My husband will come for some of the time and my amazing Mom has offered to come for the rest. 

I have set up a fundraising account at givetaxfree.org, to officially kickoff my fundraising!  This is a non-profit organizations, which if you donate, can provide you with a receipt to write off on your taxes. I also have set up a GoFundMe page. As any for-profit business, GoFundMe keeps an 8% commission, so I also encourage givetaxfree.org, PayPal, or a contribution sent directly. Information you need is listed below

givetaxfree.org              
GoFundMe                
PayPal                      
     RebeccasHSCTadventure@gmail.com

You can also check out:

Facebook       
     Rebecca’s HSCT Adventure

God has taken me (and my family) on this journey... this amazing, twisty, throw you upside down, but exciting, because He's in control kind of journey.  I can't thank-you enough for being part of it!


Your Friends,

Rebecca… and Phil, Philip, & Elodie

Summer 2018

Phil, Philip, Elodie, Moi, Kylee
(We obviously need an updated family photo!)