Liz Swain 2:31 p.m., Dec. 19
- Community Blog
Charity Begins at Home
when $4.00 is the difference between managing a really bad infection and letting it get out of control then Charity has to begin at home
the scared voice tentatively said
"Nan...i have to go into the hospital on Friday to have surgery on my ankle again"
"that wound we thought was healed broke open again" "so i went to the Doc today and he says this time he has to go in and take out the steel plates and pins and scrape the bone to see if it's harboring the infection"
the infection was one of the Enterobacters...a gram negative rod shaped highly antibiotic resistant cousin to MRSA (a gram positive round bacteria)...Lana had had that nosocomial infection after a Cervical Spine surgery and had been hopitalized for 3 months
she asked her mom for the money but she wouldn't give it to her...or some money so her sweet husband Jorge could visit the hospital and pay for gas
so often we can't even imagine how really substandard the finances of a neighbor can be....how they have to go to the Salvation Army in El Cajon to ask for a food package just to have something to eat
you don't know 'cause they won't tell you
i mean she'd bake some cookies or cake and send some over to Bobby and i when they were living on dried beans in the pot for 3 days...how was i to know that these sweet people sent me part of the best of their bakery goods
when they first moved into the beautiful new mobile near me Jorge was working as a long haul trucker...they'd sold a home at a reasonable profit and plunked it down as a down payment on their mobile
2 years later Jorge got sick...he developed Insulin Dependant Diabetes and one of his kidneys failed and his trucking career was over and they were on the skids and had to file bankruptcy
how bad could it get?
i was already a friend...had coffee with Ms Lana, Jorge and their crafty cat Mikie several times a week
one morning when i went into the mobile for some milk for my coffee i was shocked to see their frig was empty....by this time they were giving succor and a bedroom to a cousin of Jorge's who was also unemployed for a long time and he was living off his credit cards
they ended up not being able to pay for their new furniture...the mortgage fee on the mobile (they only pay the interest) and many times not even the medications or any Doctors visit they needed to go to
so far this isn't an unusual story is it? 1000's of people are in the same boat...but they're not my neighbors
very carefully i entered into the scene....first it was food as i casually would tell Lana about some item i had more of then we would ever eat
"i bought this HUGE pork roast at Cosco in Santee Lana...when i opened the package i found it is already cut in half ...would you and Jorge like the second half?"
"are you sure Nan"? she would say at first "Yep hunny...you'd be doing me a favor if you take it"
then it was
"i've got Granny Smith Apples left over...would you like that for the Pork"?
"i got the best buy on these baking product Lana...you know i won't bake them...they were a bargain so i got them for you"
whenever Lana is stress she likes to bake...and the cookies cakes etc would stream out of her oven into my kitchen because she baked too much...LOL
as time went by it was a new tire a Walmart (she paid me back in payments for that) on La Canada for her car so they could drive to important places...a free Turkey from Albertsons for Thanksgiving because i bought one....extra veggies because we'd stopped at the Farmer's market in Santee....eggs at Hillikers Egg Ranch in Lakeside...cracks at first for baking...just some easy donations to a friend in need ...who had often watched Bobby for me when i needed to get out and been a friend indeed to me
the food donations came out of my kitchen at first...later i began to actually buy food i knew they needed
Lana and Jorge NEVER asked me for anything
i have a Charity begins at home attitude
i give to those closest to me...
it's not because i don't trust the agencies around who do charitable endeavorers
i'd just rather chose who i want to help myself