If you have been around the stream for the last year, you may have heard a few things about GrandmaJay. Her year has been incredibly tough, with two stomach surgeries and going from competent and strong to frustrated, anxious, and physically weak. She takes six or seven pills twice a day and is currently unable to eat solid foods (after her fourth or fifth hospital stay). In addition to her medical issues and bills, she has the added stress of being unable to afford her mortgage payments. Before surgery she was working full time, at 77 years old. Now, she is incapable of doing so, and is at risk of losing her house, which has been her home for more than 30 years. This is all coming after multiple other financial hardships my grandparents have faced in the last few years, including losing their business and main source of income during the recession.
Before this point, I was not in a position to help, other than to be there for her emotionally when she needed me. Then Twitch happened, and suddenly not only was I able to afford conventions, computers, and video games, but I could support myself full time on the generosity of my community. What we did for Extra Life, the Valley Fire, and most recently St Jude Play Live, was incredible, but it is different to ask for donations toward a charity than it is to ask for help supporting my family.
My grandparents have been working hard to find a solution to their financial problems that was more than just a stop-gap measure, something that would allow them to stabilize their lives from now until senility. They applied for a reverse mortgage, something which, very simply, means they don't pay house payments, property taxes, or home insurance until they die. I don't know the specifics, except that they tried to get a version of this that would cost them nothing, or that they could afford, but they were turned down. They were approved for another application, but it will cost them upwards of $6000- almost the entirety of their remaining retirement savings. I strongly hope that my grandparents will remain living comfortably in their home for many years to come, and as much as I can, I would like to help them be able to afford it.
It's strange to go from being paid to work a menial job by a large corporation to being largely crowd-funded to do something I love, and it inspires me that this community I have built is one full of love and generosity. I'm not trying to pressure anyone into solving my family's problems, but if you wish to help, the money I raise, from now until I can't afford to anymore (or we meet my grandparents financial needs) will be going straight to my grandparents. I would empty my entire savings account and go back to working at a grocery store if I felt like that was the only way to help my grandparents get back on their feet. Thankfully, there are other options, and I hope its not too forward of me to ask for your help in keeping a roof over their heads, for the rest of their lives.
If you would like to help, any donation made to me for the remainder of June&July, or until we meet our goal, will be going directly to them. I will also be giving them a portion of my savings, and if you can't help financially, sharing the stream and this post is always incredibly supportive.
I love you all so much for everything you have done for me, and thank you from the bottom of my heart for supporting my family as though they were your own. The flock is my family, and I am astonished and grateful every single day.