My lovely friend Jonathan Waiter, talented photographer and all-around super sweet dude (and surprisingly intense Starcraft player), has recently been diagnosed with late stage lymphoma. If that means nothing to you, let me put it into layman’s terms: he’s got some seriously bad cancer that has spread throughout his torso, to his liver and his heart. Bad bad bad news. Like so many other Americans, Jonathan lacks health insurance and chemotherapy and the surrounding costs are a severe burden.
Before going on, let me quote the description our friend Teresa wrote.
For anyone who may not have heard the full story, or if you are new to the story altogether... Jonathan was diagnosed just recently with Lymphoma. The stage is currently unclear, though it is clear that it is Stage 3 or 4.
The discovery was made following several bouts of losing consciousness. During one such occasion, he was rushed to the hospital by ambulance. Tests finally concluded that Jonathan was facing a cancer diagnosis. Early imaging showed tumors in the chest cavity, lungs, and surrounding major arteries.
After navigating the public hospital system with no insurance, and a Medicaid application pending, Jonathan went on through additional testing to find that the cancer had also spread to his kidneys, liver and pancreas.
Medical bills are piling up at a truly heart breaking rate. These costs are mostly supposed to be covered retro-actively by Medicaid, although, as if more bad news could be suffered, the Medicaid application was denied.
Friends are reviewing the information, and will be going through the motions to appeal the decision by way of a hearing. This could be a fight, but the hope is that it was due to a simple application error.
Jonathan’s case has been escalated to emergency status in the public hospital system. He and some nearby friends are also looking into the possibility of transferring into a more reputable hospital once the Medicaid issue is sorted.
As you can imagine, the phone calls, emails, and messages are pouring in. Well wishers, friends, and family are understandably eager to be updated and to hear Jonathan’s voice on the other end of the phone… however, his energy is very low and he is experiencing a great amount of pain and discomfort most of the time, especially following chemo treatments.
The purpose of this site is to receive regular updates on his mental, physical and emotional state.
A small network of friends will be operating this site. I’m sure it will be a rotating cast depending on who has the latest information and/or closest proximity.
If he is not able to return your calls and messages, please stop by this site, where we will do our best to keep everyone informed of all the newest developments. I can tell you that Jonathan sincerely appreciates every person in his life, and cares very much for all of the concern that everyone is already showing, and the help that everyone is offering.
There are apparently several fund raising efforts in the works. That is GREAT news. In addition to the donation capabilities of this site, we will try to keep you updated on links to all other efforts to make sure Jonathan receives all the support possible.
Being self employed comes with many advantages and disadvantages... as Jonathan is currently experiencing. There is, of course, freedom to work the way you want and to live the truly rewarding life of a professional artist, but the down sides are inevitable. Limited access to health coverage, no disability insurance, no paid sick time, and the anxiety of uncertainty in the middle of an unforeseen health crisis.
During this long ordeal, Jonathan needs to be able to cover his day to day expenses. By this, I do not mean medical expenses. I mean the basic necessities of life. We can help to make this happen, and I am asking you to do just that.
Your support means the world to Jonathan and to everyone who loves him and wants to see him through to ultimate success. If you know him, you at least have a special place in your heart for him, if you don’t outright love and adore him.
Thank you for reading, and thank you for stopping by. More updates to come, on a regular basis. –Teresa
Serious business here. I don’t ask my readers for a lot here on The Black Laser and I make no money on this site. But this is important to me and it would be great if you could help Jonathan out with anything you can manage. It doesn’t need to be a lot (though that would be rad), but do try and help. Spread the word. You’re all awesome.
Donate here: GoFundMe: Jonathan Waiter
And while you’re at it, check out Jonathan’s photography.