True Friendship’s Price

True Friendship is priceless, you think, but if you look closely, you’ll realize that’s not so… Take my childhood friend, Barb Gambill (The Gad About) and me. Our friendship has lasted over 55 years; through long term separations (this last one since 2005 when I moved to Alabama).

We’ve had our trials of chauffeuring each other around: for KMart diapers for her son Ricky (the only ones that would fit him) and KMart cream rinse for her poodles who were hyperallergic, to her picking me up at the St Louis Airport when I pulled my back in Las Vegas, and babysitting Bernard Jr when he had pneumonia so I could work. And the list goes on and on (as the cliche goes)…

Recently Barb and her son, Ricky have found themselves in a battle they may never win: the money battle. Like so many of us who keep stretching our dollars, trying to make them last (and realizing it ain’t gonna happen) they need $3000.00 to save Ricky’s sight.

When Barb first PM’d me about this I cried. I cried because I already knew the “vision loss” fear because of wet macular degeneration I’ve been battling since 2010. I cried because I already knew how helpless she’s felt knowing her only child was hurting and she couldn’t help him. I cried because I wondered how I could scrounge up $3000.00 so Ricky could have eye surgery that WILL save his sight (which alas I cannot have).

Once the emotional roller coaster past and I began to think, I started asking Barb questions and was told they’d already tried getting a $3000.00 loan (which is pretty impossible without collateral and on a limited income). I asked if they’d tried GoFund Me and she said no; so Barb and a friend back in St Louis set up an account for Barbara Gambill to save Ricky’s sight.

So far only 2 people have contributed and once again I’m fighting back tears; feeling helpless and frustrated as my best friend and her son worry and suffer. Ricky’s surgery has been postponed, but not cancelled, so there’s still hope that his eyesight can be saved.

The fact that the GoFund Me idea was mine haunts me and I feel so guilty. I have no idea how much money Barb’s gotten. I know some people like Sis mailed her checks and money orders, but I know it’s not enough. If I had $3000.00 I’d give it to Barb because she’s my “family” and I hate to see her in pain.

I was the first one to contribute to her account and I debated about just mailing her a check, but how could I when using GoFund Me was my idea? I thought Facebook would rally around her, but… I shared on FB and prayed along with her and her friends, and at least we still have a chance because the surgery’s been postponed. It’s not the doctor, but her insurance that’s causing the problem. They want the money upfront. The sheisters won’t even let her make payments and the doctor’s already waived his fee. (I wish she’d tell me which insurance company it is; I’d plaster their name all over my blog “#scheister.”)

Here is the link to Barb’s GoFund Me account. I hope that you can help — even if it’s just to share this. Perhaps we will succeed after all and finally find just what True Friendship’s cost is. Thank you.

About sandrabranum

I'm a philosopher, dreamer, poet, writer -- not necessarily in that order -- and I get to write it all down and share it with the world thanks to the Wonderful World Wide Web!
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1 Response to True Friendship’s Price

  1. Barbara E. Gambill says:

    Thank you Sandy for being my life long friend and being there for me. Yes, we have been given a postponement of the surgery but I don’t know how long they are willing to wait before they cancel it all together. You, your sister Sue and one of my dog friends, Cindy Bartley, have contributed to the fund . The total so far is $150. of the $3,000 needed to save his sight. I keep trying to think of a way to come up with the cash needed but so far not able to. I keep praying for a “Miracle” but have not come through. As you well know I am there for you whenever you need me. That is how it has been for all our years of friendship and will be forever. Thank you so much for your support and friendship. Love you and your sister “Sue” so much.

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