The Time is Now: Woman, disabled son get relief from pain

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Sal Dimiceli | November 24, 2015

Dear W.C.,

I am a senior citizen living with my disabled son. We both live on social security. The woman who manages our apartment suggested I write to you for help with purchasing mattresses. My son and I have been sleeping on the same old mattresses we received as hand me downs over twenty years ago. Both of us have bad backs and these mattresses are making our backs even worse. My son was born with several birth defects 47 years ago. The doctors back then did not even expect him to make it through the week much less this many years. I have cared for him every day since the day he was born. He cannot drive or walk very far and is not capable of any work. I do not have a husband or any other children or family that can help us. I hope you can help us with this request because we are both in pain from these old mattresses.

Dear Readers,

I called the apartment manager listed as a reference to discuss this senior woman and her disabled son. I had worked with this apartment manager before and knew she was a trustworthy referral looking out for the best interests of her senior and disabled tenants. The manager confirmed everything written in the letter and that this senior woman and disabled son were in desperate need of our help. She also added some more details and was surprised the woman had only asked for mattresses, as she knew the woman and son were in need of much more help. The manager told me about their struggle to pay their rent at times. She felt a visit would be the best way for me to assess their situation. I told her I would pay them a visit shortly.

I was knocking at the door of the apartment later in the day when I saw an elderly woman helping a disabled man down the hall towards the door I was knocking on. When they saw me standing by their door the man stopped his struggle down the hall and asked the woman next to him, “Mom, who is that man knocking on our door?” The mother smiled and said to her son, “That is W.C., the man that we were telling you about.” I knew the “we” she was referring to must have included the apartment manager. I walked to greet them in the hall and the woman invited me inside. I watched as the senior woman helped her son into a chair, even though he was considerably larger than her. I watched as she winced while she lowered him carefully into the very worn recliner. She rubbed her back as she straightened and offered her son a glass of water. Once he was settled she asked me to sit and talk at the small kitchen table with only two chairs.

The senior mother shared with me the details of her son's traumatic birth and the birth defects that limited his ability to function beyond the level of a five year old. She continued to tell me about her son's accomplishments, not his limitations, and she never spoke with any regrets for the life she had shared with her son. She told me how close they were from so many years together and how much she loved her son. The son must have been listening from the other room as I heard him call to his mother saying, “I love you too Mom.” This brought tears to the elderly woman's eyes. In a whisper, since she now knew her son was listening, she told me about the heart defect and other health complications that the doctors continually had told her would shorten his life. He already had advanced arthritis and his aging was progressed. The mother said in a whisper, “I don't know what I will do if I lose him and yet I worry what will happen to my son if I should die first.” I could see this weighed heavily on her heart and did my best to console her.  

I asked to see the beds they were sleeping on. They were indeed as bad, if not worse than the woman had indicated in her letter. I have seen many old, sagging worn mattresses that people attempt to sleep on. Seeing the condition of the mother and son's health I knew they would benefit greatly from new mattresses. I told the senior mother we would have two beds delivered that week and the old ones hauled away. She began to cry and the son became distressed by this, saying, “Mom, Mom what's wrong? Why are you crying?” She gave her son a hug and told him, “These are happy tears my son. This man is going to give us comfy beds to sleep on so our backs don't hurt anymore.” The son showed how happy he was by clapping his hands and the big smile on his face. I told them about how all of “You” come together to make The Time Is Now to Help possible.

A few days later I came to see the new beds set up in their small apartment. The mother and son both proudly showed me their new beds made up with new bedding. I had sent volunteers over with new mattress pads, sheets, blankets and pillows. They also had brought over some food and toiletries I noticed they were running low on. We provided gas cards for their trips to doctors and the son's favorite trips to the library. The senior mother's voice broke while she was thanking all of “Us” for the wonderful beds. She began to cry when she said, “It has been so many years since I have had a good night's sleep. We are both so grateful. No one has ever helped us like this before.” I reassured her we would always be there to help if they ever needed help from us again. The mother said through her tears, “You don't know how much that means to me. I never realized how hard this would be as I got older.” The son held his mother's hand and asked, “Why are you crying again Mom?” The mother hugged her son and said, “They are happy tears again because this man and a lot of good people care about us son.”

God Bless all of “You” for being there with your support to make our good deeds a reality for helping our fellow creations. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

Health & Happiness, God Bless Everyone, W.C./Sal                                                    

Please Help: There are many coming to us in desperation. Our good fellow creations need our compassion. Together we make a big difference. Make checks payable to: The Time Is Now to Help, P.O. Box 1, Lake Geneva, WI 53147. The Time Is Now to Help is a federally recognized 501(c)3 charitable organization licensed in the states of Wisconsin and Illinois. You will receive a tax deductible, itemized thank you receipt showing how your donation provided assistance for the poverty stricken.                                                                              

A Very Special Thank You: Fox Charities, Clarence & Marilyn Schawk Family Foundation, Lake Geneva Area Realty, AbbVie Foundation Employee Engagement Fund, Silicon Valley Community Foundation, Alliant Energy Foundation, Michael Glass, James & Elizabeth Bach, Darlene Pionkoski, Yvonne Mol, Arlene Clausen, Gerald & Joyce Byers, Robert & Christine Klaus, Joan Murphy, William & Dorothy Tookey, Sally & John Dicmas, Becky Feffer, Victor Stasica, Karin Collamore, Margaret Guidarelli, Gregory Swanson, Sid & Patty Johnson, Cathy Erikson, W.C. Family Resource Center/Food Pantry volunteers, and all the God loving volunteers of all our caring pantries, ALL of you who support The Time Is Now to Help donation boxes, and the businesses that allow our donation boxes. Anyone who would like a Time Is Now donation box in your business, please call (262) 249-7000.                                                                 

Please visit: www.timeisnowtohelp.org     

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