My husband and I have been struggling for the past year. He is disabled and sees 10 medical and mental heath specialists with sometimes 4 appointments a week. He had a traumatic brain injury when he was 16 that damaged his frontal and temporal lobes. He managed to serve in the US Army and has struggled since he got out in 2004 to hold down a job. This is partially due to his brain injury.
We met in February 2016 online and fell in love. In April, I saw him have 2 Grand Mal seizures in less than 4 hours apart. Each one lasted over 5 minutes and he was not the same after. He seemed to have more problems with memory, communication, and cognitive issues. Later, Doctors and I noticed other issues that lead to him having a diagnosis of PTSD/Anxiety and Bipolar 1. He is on two seizure medications and still has seizures. He also takes anti-anxiety medication and a sleeping pill if he can’t sleep. He sees a Psychologist, a psychiatrist, a neurologist, an ophthalmologist for the light sensitivity brought on by temporal lobe damage, a speech therapist, a neuro-pshycologist, a sleep specialist, a traumatic brain specialist, and a primary care physician. He is also in anger management once a week.
My husband is not allowed to drive because of his seizures and injuries, so I am supposed to get him everywhere. I also have to frequently be his voice at his appointments when he is unable to explain himself or get out what he wants to say. I handle all aspects of his medical and personal care, our finances, and everything else. I have lost jobs trying to balance work and his care and this has caused homelessness at times. We borrowed money from my father-in-law to get us a place in December 2016. However, we did not know it would be filled with drug addicts, alcoholics, people fighting, partiers, drug dealers/makers, and criminals. We also didn’t know the landlord would refuse to do any repairs or that he was just out for a rent check and wanted no contact with you after moving in.
I have had back problems since 2006 and they worsened this year to the point I couldn’t move without a lot of pain. I was sent to the ER just a couple weeks ago, not able to move without screaming. I was sent home with a diagnosis of a herniated disc and a chiropractor found scoliosis in my lower back. Both issues are affecting my sciatic nerve. I have no medical insurance for get this fixed. Through a lot of prayer and back exercises, the pain has lessened to a manageable level from 0-4 on a pain scale. I do find that if I left too much or walk for long distances, I start to hurt in my hips and lower back again.
I live in an area of Florida that has mainly jobs that require you to be on your feet for long periods of time. Until my back is better and because my husband needs me in the day for appointments, I took a work at home tech support job. This job was $12 an hour and had a zero tolerance for background noise. My upstairs neighbors are night partiers and are very loud in the night and day. This can be heard loud and clear in our apartment. Fighting, hammering at 2am, parties, loud music, jumping up and down, throwing dice on the floor (a dice game they place), screaming, loud guitars, and more. They are not the nicest people on earth if you ask them to please quiet it down, the police don’t phase them nor do police give them anything but a touch lashing, and the landlord could care less as long as he has rent. The issues have caused us lack of sleep and stress beyond what we can handle. This has also caused me to lose my job because of the noise and lack of sleep. My boss could hear them and noticed I was not as on top of my classes. The stress and lack of sleep has also caused my husband to have seizures.
We got another loan from my father-in-law that would have helped us move into the only place we could find that did not want a large deposit, was furnished, and had all utilities included. We thought we could move in and save my job, but we could not. The place wanted too much to put in my internet and phone that I need to do my job. Without that, I have no job and they would not allow me to move my AT&T U-Verse over there. I lost my job in the end and was told to reapply when I moved into a a more quiet environment. Without my job, I can’t pay rent anywhere. Rather than be evicted and have that follow us around on a background check for future places to live, we are renting a storage unit and going to be homeless for a while.
I tried calling my husband’s social worker and she said there is no help in our area for us. So, we are going to have to move to another county to try and find help. I am not worried about a job. If I have to pop a few over the counter pain pills (ALEVE) to try and get through a day, I will. I might even get lucky enough to find a sit down job. We have one week to move and I am using that time to find us a place to lay our heads. My husband also has to transfer all his medical care to another VA. We are thankful the he will still be able to get his medication at any VA without a transfer.
I have had people put me down for us not being able to “keep it together”. Unless you are in our shoes or understand the hell we have gone through, don’t judge us. I have friends in our shoes right now who get it and understand. I am writing off anyone from my life that decides to put us down instead of lift us up. I hate to do it, but we to not need nor want any negativity in our lives anymore. Life is just too short and we have been dealing with negativity for far too long. The situations we have gone through almost destroyed our marriage and I refuse to allow that any more.
I am not afraid, I have God on my side and he will lead the way. He will make a way for us to be OK again. I have the faith, I am not afraid.