Hudson woman hopes for a better New Year
Treston Arndt hopes 2010 will be a much better year than the last one.
The Hudson woman, who turned 40 on Christmas Eve, was diagnosed with Non-Hodgkins Lymphoma in 1983 at age 14 and went through 18 months of chemotherapy and many hours of radiation. The treatments may have cured the cancer but could be the cause of many other health problems she developed later in life.
"I have never been alright," she said last week during a conversation in home. But there was a time in the earlier part of this decade that things were a lot better. "I got married in 2002 and worked for Aurora Community Services in River Falls."
However, things went south in the last six months. "Since July, I've been hospitalized eight times," she said.
Most recently she suffered congestive heart failure and spent two weeks at St. Mary's Hospital in Rochester. She got home just prior to Thanksgiving.
She is constantly hooked up to an oxygen machine on some 50-feet of hose. "Oxygen is my best friend," she said. The hose is long enough for her to roam around her house and go to bed while connected to the apparatus.
In 2008 she was diagnosed with Wegener's Vasculitis, a rare disease the affects the lungs. She has also undergone three hip replacement surgeries.
Arndt believes a lot of her health problems are a result of the heavy chemotherapy and radiation applications following her early cancer diagnosis.
She has hope that a new medicine called Revatio, "It's basically Viagra," she said, is helping her condition, but she has to take three pills a day. "They cost $15 a piece," she said.
The repeated hospitalizations and mountain of medications she is on have run up quite a bill.
"I have insurance, but it doesn't pay 100 percent," she said. "The last bill I got was for $100,000.
Arndt said she is also in the "doughnut hole" in her insurance plan where she was without help until Jan. 1.
Facing this obstacle, some relatives and friend started to organize a benefit for her. They began the effort shortly after Thanksgiving.
"It was my sister-in-law, Jennine Lundquist's idea," said Arndt, "her relatives own the Borderline Bar and Grill in Lakeland, Minn., and donated the space for Saturday, Jan. 9."
There is a $5 cover charge for the event and the night includes a silent auction, raffles and food and features the music of "DJ Dug E", one of Arndt's neighbors.
Arndt said she owes a lot of thanks to friends and relatives who pitched in to organize the evening including Breauanna Hanson, Gabes Rabb and Tanya Reigel, all of New Richmond, Tammy Rivord, Dresser, and Cathy Drazkowski, Ellsworth.
Arndt grew up in New Richmond and graduated from New Richmond High School in 1998. She has four older siblings and recently suffered the loss of her mother, long-time New Richmond resident Nila Lindberg, at age 74.
People may also donate writing a check to the Treston Lindberg Arndt Benefit and mailing it to either First National Bank of New Richmond, 109 E. Second St., New Richmond, WI 54017 or Lake Elmo Bank, 600 Inwood Ave. N., Oakdale, MN 55120.