Get Jeff to family for care and support.

To put it simply, I need my family around me at this time. 

 

A LITTLE ABOUT ME:

I'm Jeffrey, a 27-year-old guy who has suffered long-term illness for most of my life. At the age of 10 I was diagnosed with Diabetes Type 1 and have been insulin dependant ever since. Throughout my life I have been in and out of hospital with other conditions relating to Diabetes. However, in recent years,m things have progressively got more difficult.

From 12, I was involved in social services and had foster care placements, my life consisted of living at the carers during the week and living at my mums during the weekend. From a young age, I was very active. I was a cadet in the St Johns Ambulance, was involved in youth projects at the local youth centre and volunteered myself throughout the community. I also held a paper round job once a week.

 

MOVING ON:

By the age of 16 I had completed a 2-year Hospitality and Catering course at Colchester Institute as well as all my GCSEs at School, From school, I have always had a job. Starting my career as a cashier for Tesco and going on to work for several retail stores similar, I was now in full-time foster care, still volunteering, studying IT at college and was also part of the local community radio station. However, my foster care placement came to an abrupt end and I was moved a considerable distance away to another placement. This meant all of my activities stopped. Until I was 18 I lived in a rough area of South London, at 18 my placement with social services, of course, ended. I was moved once again into a flat that was remote from family, meaning my relationship fizzled out.


A CHANGE OF SCENERY:

Up until the age of 20, I lived in this remote part of Essex working at a couple of convenience stores as a supervisor, my life was very boring, consisting of work, eat sleep and repeat. It got to a point where I was alone, depressed and isolated, so I decided I was going to move, I settled for Barnsley as I had met a few people who lived there that I knew from my teenage years so thought it would be ideal as I would have a bit of a network in the area. Again, I worked full time, became involved with community projects where I could and just lived my life as a happy individual.

From moving to Barnsley, I did begin to rebuild my relationship with family, I now am very close to my mother, we speak frequently and when I could I would try and visit. I have also grown a stronger relationship with my brothers who also live near to my mum.

 

THE TIDES HAVE TURNED:

It began in early 2017 overnight when somehow I scratched the surface of my right eye during sleep, The scratch itself was directly on the cornea (the bit you see through) and was diagnosed as a corneal abrasion. As time progressed, the scratch never healed and only got worse. Eventually, the scratch caused a build-up of pressure in the eye, which caused bleeding in the veins in my eye. The bleeding caused further pressure to a point where the pressure was so much, a retinal detachment occurred. This is where your retina (the signal between your eye and brain) detaches. This left me completely blind in the right eye, with no chance of ever regaining sight.

Due to the health implications, I was forced to stop working so I could pay attention to my health. This lead to me feeling like I did when I lived in the isolated place in Essex. I became depressed, anxious, was embarrassed about my health conditions and avoided any social contact where I could. Eventually, I got myself into such a state that I felt suicidal, I went to my GP who instantly diagnosed Depression and Anxiety disorder.

Following this, my health conditions continued to grow, mostly due to Diabetes. I suffer from, Diabetes, Hypothyroidism, Hypertension, Diabetic Retinopathy (left Eye), Tinnitus, Odeama, Unbalanceness, Breathlessness and most recently Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 5.


WHERE AM I NOW:

This brings me to why I have started this GoFundeMe. In August 2020 during the height of the COVID-19 pandemic, I was admitted to the Hospital following worrying blood tests done by my GP and a collection of symptoms. The tests showed Kidney function had dropped. I was taken to Northern General Hospital in Sheffield. Where I was diagnosed with Acute Kidney Injury (AKI) a condition again related to Diabetes.  I stayed in the hospital for 14 days. During which time I was treated for several things, When being admitted I was 110KG in weight due to extensive swelling and excess fluid retention. When I finally left, I was 80KG. I was treated with some infusions as I had deficiencies and I also had some infections so needed antibiotics. By the end of the 2 weeks, I was doing a huge amount better but was told that eventually, things would progress to more severe Kidney issues. This, I was prepared for, what I wasn't ready for was how soon things would happen.

It's now January 2021, and a routine blood test is done in preparation for a Kidney outpatient appointment. The appointment comes around and I'm given the devastating news, I am being diagnosed with Chronic Kidney Disease Stage 3. I'm told we'll keep an eye on your Kidneys but was warned that over time I will need Kidney Dialysis and Transplant. The vibe I got from the doctors was that I would have plenty of time before things would get worse. How wrong I was. Since then my condition has got worse, the swelling is back, breathlessness, lethargic, tiredness and generally feeling crap. I have already progressed to Stage 5 (End Stage) Kidney disease and now need Dialysis and Transplant as soon as possible. At the last count, my Kidneys only function at 10%. 

I am in the middle of being prepared for these treatments but have been warned once they start, I WILL feel worse and need a huge amount of support. I am now at a stage again where my friends who lived locally to me, have moved on. So I am at a stage where I am lonely and isolated again, especially with the pandemic. The only option at the moment is to move back to my family again down south in Essex. The doctors have advised I really should do this before my treatment properly starts, as I will be too tired and exhausted to do a move once it does. Because I have been unable to work since 2017 following the eye issue I had, I have relied on our benefits system to survive. Pre pandemic, I get £325 per month. Because of COVID our government was kind enough to support us with an extra £20 per week payment to support us through the pandemic, So currently claimants get £412 per month. I have been fortunate enough to be awarded Personal Independence Payment of low rate mobility. Which is £95 per month. So currently I get around £500 per month, Now I am on top of my finances and budget to the penny but even with all the penny counting I just can not afford to be able to save quickly enough to organise a home move to the south of England. At the same time, my family is also on a low income and can not help financially. 

 

WHAT CAN YOU DO?:

With all I have contributed to the community throughout my life, I am asking if people would be warm enough to support me in my mission to be with my family once again, so I can get the support I need from the people I now care about most. I would be so heart warmed if you could spare even a few pounds, to help me reach my goal so that I can be with my family. A little help in this instance will literally go a long way and I'd love for you to be able to know that you helped someone in need and a really difficult time in their life. If you can't donate, don't worry, you can also share this page with others to spread the word.

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Organiser

Jeffrey Billings 
Organiser
Barnsley, UK
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