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A Christmas Wish for Nefertiti

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Nefertiti - a woman of adventurous spirit

A jazzy, classy lady has fallen through the cracks in our social services and medical systems.

Nefertiti is an active and passionate “wise woman”. In 2005, she trained for and began a cross-country trip on a recumbent bicycle, to celebrate coming into her 60th year.  Shortly into her trip, her cargo carrier and bicycle jack-knifed, throwing her into oncoming traffic and causing a compound fracture of her leg.

She dragged herself to the shoulder. Her bike, still in the middle of the road, fortuitously alerted a trucker who rescued her. Questionable surgery left her leg torqued, crooked, and painful. Her estranged family refused to allow her to convalesce at their home.

She requires a knee replacement, and has some instability in walking. A fall in March fractured her left knee and right elbow. Physical Therapy was started but then revoked due to "system ineligibility". She has no health insurance, and receives only a small Social Security check. She worked at a part-time job to do her best to make payments for her medical care, but she has been placed in collections.

A few weeks ago, Nefertiti had found a place to stay temporarily while she tried to catch up. Among other things, she assisted in painting canvas labyrinths.

Nefertiti painting a canvas labyrinth

On Dec. 2, she lost her balance and fell down a flight of stairs, breaking her hip. She had surgery, and “celebrated” her 63rd birthday in the hospital on Dec. 3rd.

Her friend, Judy, says that Nefertiti  “is caught in a weird limbo of no-man's land of age and disability; not old enough, didn't have/couldn't afford health insurance, yet too healthy to be considered disabled or indigent (although she is essentially homeless). She has worked very hard to help herself be strong and not be a sickly weakling. The sad thing about the system is that that is working against her now. Sometimes some people just need a bridge-loan, a small crutch for a while til they get back up'n'running. Unfortunately, our system doesn't have such a thing or can't understand that - yet.”

Nefertiti recovering in the hospital on her birthday.

Clearly, this is a person who would benefit from something any civilized nation should offer its citizens: Universal Health Care. And, in return, the community would benefit from a woman like this who shares her insights and joie de vivre with the world, providing an exciting role model for moving into the wisdom years.

I’ve got Kucinich’s Single–Payer, Universal Health Care Plan at the top of my list, maybe Santa will bring it next year.

In the meantime, Judy offers this Christmas Wish List for Nefertiti:

·         A lawyer who can help her file for bankruptcy, gratis. (Nefertiti had been trying to save up enough money in order to file for bankruptcy, so that she would be able to get help from the government to get into her own assisted-living apartment.) 

·         Suggestions about a social-aid organization, a program, a grant or a charity who can provide some services. Nefertiti is currently in St. Louis.

·         Funds toward purchasing some Physical Therapy

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Meryl Ann Butler is an artist, author, educator and OpedNews Managing Editor who has been actively engaged in utilizing the arts as stepping-stones toward joy-filled wellbeing for over 25 years. She studied art with Harold Ransom Stevenson in Sea Cliff NY for seven years before opening her own art school. Stevenson had (more...)

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Meryl Ann.  Thank you for bringing this story... by Jan Baumgartner on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 1:02:20 PM
And you're one of the people who inspires me! ... by Meryl Ann Butler on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 1:06:11 PM
If she's living in California and collecting S... by Sandy Sand on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 2:10:11 PM
Yeah, we need Dennis in there.OK, i am off to read... by Meryl Ann Butler on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 2:24:56 PM
My heart goes out to Nefertiti. Here is a woman wi... by Gail Davis on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 2:30:53 PM
thanks for the further info on Kucinich's HR 6... by Meryl Ann Butler on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 2:50:06 PM
I sat today with my bedridden friend while her mot... by Margaret Bassett on Thursday, Dec 25, 2008 at 3:34:41 PM
for your comments andinsights, and also for sittin... by Meryl Ann Butler on Friday, Dec 26, 2008 at 1:06:29 AM
Thanks, Meryl Ann, for shining your light on this.... by Daniel Patrick Welch on Friday, Dec 26, 2008 at 9:59:18 AM
Dr. Daley's article is right on target !... by Meryl Ann Butler on Friday, Dec 26, 2008 at 12:46:57 PM
...what kind of a country that is supposed to be f... by Anita Stewart on Friday, Dec 26, 2008 at 4:12:57 PM
;-)... by Meryl Ann Butler on Friday, Dec 26, 2008 at 4:29:47 PM
may be sent to:Nefertiti DuBoisc/o Labyrinth Enter... by Meryl Ann Butler on Saturday, Dec 27, 2008 at 6:07:07 PM
thanks for this heartwrenching piece, Meryl Ann ~ ... by Rady Ananda on Saturday, Dec 27, 2008 at 10:59:34 PM This is a d-base of grantor... by Kathryn Smith on Sunday, Dec 28, 2008 at 7:59:09 AM
Nefertiti could model for massage school trainees.... by Kathryn Smith on Sunday, Dec 28, 2008 at 8:45:13 AM
This thread is being printed for Nefertiti, so she... by Meryl Ann Butler on Sunday, Dec 28, 2008 at 12:49:16 PM
with more info on grants and funding:click here ... by Meryl Ann Butler on Monday, Dec 29, 2008 at 4:37:01 PM