Hello, my name is Gail Tate and I was always taught to not ask for help because “there’s someone worse off than you are”, so it is very hard for me to be writing and asking for help; but I feel this is my last and only option.

I am 69 years old and have lived in my home for 40 years and it has been a struggle to survive sometimes on my own for the last 30 years.  After living here for ten years, my husband (ex) decided to leave me for one of his co-workers, alone with two of our three daughters to raise, so I had to go to work after being a stay at home mom for 22 years.

I am about to lose everything from being too proud to ask for help, but all the organizations that have been referred to me could not help (or would not).  Some would not even ask my name or what my problem was before saying “we’ve run out of money this month or we are not doing that program anymore”; but, they would always give you more names or organizations to call.  How many times can a person be rejected?  If they knew how hard it was for me to even call and that I would not have called unless I really needed help.


I’ve always been able to keep my head above water, sometimes working two full time jobs, but my working days came to a halt when I lost my job in 2009 because of a merger and restructuring after a new company purchased the one where I was working.

Well, here is my story and I appreciate you taking the time to read it and if by chance you can help me, that would be an answer to my prayer:

1.  Like I was saying, I lost my job on a Friday in April 2009 and went to visit my mother in the hospital, took her home and stayed with her for eight months 24/7 until she passed away, putting my life on hold.  I was 62 years old at the time and started my Social Security benefits, along with unemployment compensation to be able to live.  It was unbelieveable the resumes I sent out – 62 years old, had been making up to $20 an hour – companies were hiring part time people at minimum wage mainly to keep from paying for benefits, so my resumes were passed over.  This was a bad time for me – being depressed from my mother’s passing and unable to get another job.  This was at the time the job market was low and unemployment was at an all time high.

2.  Going through all my money, I did manage to do internet sales out of my home in April 2011 and was barely able to pay my bills, but I did without asking for help.  I had to borrow from one credit card to pay another, etc., in hopes that things would turn around.


3.   The weekend of August 31 thru September 1, 2012, a relative and I went to a family reunion which was only  three hours away and I guess I hurt my low back lifting luggage.  I could not stand up straight and was in excruciating pain when I returned and I went to my primary doctor the next day after returning on September 2, 2012 and was told I had bulging and herniated discs in my lumbar region.

4.  I had to undergo nerve block injections and radio frequency twice a week, then once a week sometimes and this continued for a whole year.  My lumbar area never stopped hurting and the pain kept moving up my back.

5.  I was referred to a well-known orthopedic surgeon after going to a neurosurgeon, who would not touch me.   The orthopedic surgeon said he never had a patient with three compressed areas (Cervical, Thoracic and Lumbar) on the spinal cord.  My primary physician, pain management doctor and surgeon kept asking when did I have an accident (which I never had).  I guess the injury to the lumbar section caused a domino effect all the way up to my neck.  The three doctors kept telling me how bad my back was on the MRI imaging films and x-rays.  All the doctors said that I really had no choice but to undergo surgery or take a chance of being paralyzed.

6.  Even though my lumbar area was the most painful, my first surgery was on the Cervial section performed from C4-C7 on October 2013, Thoracic surgery from T4-T12 was performed on January 27, 2014,  and then on December 15, 2014, surgery on the Lumber section L1-L4 was performed.  After the Thoracic and Lumbar surgeries, I was in physical rehab after the Thoracic surgery for a month and then two months after the Lumbar surgery.   All three major surgeries were performed within 14 months.   I had pneumonia several times and I am in excruciating pain all the time even with pain medication.  I am presently in a wheelchair, even though I’ve had occupational and physical home therapy several times, which is believed now to have harmed me more than helped me.

7.  Now, I am told that I have brittle bone disease, severe osteoporosis and several fractures (severe compound fractures at T12, L1 and L4, with bulging herniated discs in the lumbar area).  I probably have more, but the latest lumbar MRI showed these fractures.


8.  I tried to copy and paste pictures of my latest x-rays to show that every disc has at least two long screws, rods, bolts, nuts, plates – unbelievable to have so much hardware and still falling apart.  Every medical personnel and physicians seeing the films can’t believe the amount of hardware in my body.  I can feel all of it, especially when the weather changes.

Three months after the Thoracic surgery, I completely ran out of money and called all my credit card providers and told them I was unable to pay for a while and then called my mortgage company to ask if they could extend my mortgage out a year until I was able to try to work, or to offer me one of programs they offered on a pamphlet they sent to me every time they mailed out a Loss Mitigation package.   I had perfect credit before the surgeries, but I have not been able to work on the computer without excruciating pain.

I have no intention of not paying what I owe, but I don’t know how I can do that now.

I tried to work with my mortgage company for several months with no luck.  Since it is an FHA loan, I called them and they said I qualified for all the programs but one (HARP) and they even called my mortgage company – but they had no luck.  I kept sending them the information they requested multiple times, but every time was denied because they needed something else or said I did not send them a document, which I did (stall tactic trying to force me into foreclosure because it would benefit them because of the equity in my home).  I borrowed money from my children and hired a lawyer and when my last payment was made to them, they said they could not help me.  They did nothing and it turned out to be a scam.

A foreclosure suit was filed, so I hired a large law firm locally (after selling large items on Craig’s List to pay their fee) and the year I paid for will be out next month in May 2016; so, I expect they will leave me hanging too.  It has kept the foreclosure at bay at least.  The lawyers all promise that they can get at least $50,000 knocked off of your mortgage and payments reduced, but none of those promises have been kept or even spoken about.  I had hoped that they would have reached a resolution, so I could turn around and try to get a reverse mortgage, but that looks out of reach now.

Like I said at the beginning, I have lived in my home for 40 years and now, I am physically disabled and can hardly do anything for myself.  I am at my wits end.  I have always considered myself a good person, who has always tried to help when people were in need; but, I found out quickly that that is a one-way street when I needed help.

I’ve always called on God for help and everything would work out, but He is cutting it close this time.  I really need help and if you can find it in your heart to help me, I will be eternally grateful.  Thank you.