https://www.glwd.org/blog/building-back-how-meals-from-gods-love-helped-kelley-get-healthy-and-back-to-work/

12.27.22
/ Clients

Building Back: How Meals From God’s Love Helped Kelley Return to Work

As a teacher, professor, and volunteer, Kelley has dedicated her life to helping others. But four months after catching what had been a mild case of COVID-19, Kelley began experiencing severe pain and exhaustion. Unable to walk a full city block without becoming short of breath, Kelley reached out to her doctor for help. On the recommendation of her physician, she checked into an emergency room and discovered her heart capacity was down to 15%. A team of medical professionals diagnosed her with congestive heart failure due to long COVID. After spending 10 days in the hospital, Kelley returned home and found herself unable to shower or cook without experiencing extreme exhaustion. For the first time in her life, Kelley was unable to lift or carry anything and began using a cane for support. She had trouble carrying groceries and standing up to fix food became an impossible task. As she describes it, her strength and stamina were at zero. On top of her physical condition, Kelley felt brain fog and had trouble concentrating. Accustomed to living independently, Kelley struggled to adjust to life with a debilitating condition. During the first two weeks of her at-home recovery, Kelley realized how difficult eating had become for her. In her own words:

“With my body adjusting to new medications and their side effects, I had no appetite and had to make a schedule to ensure I ate. I relied on friends to drop off groceries but eating suddenly became a chore and cooking left me exhausted.”

Two weeks after she returned home, Kelley’s social worker called God’s Love and set her up with meals. Her assigned Registered Dietitian Nutritionist made sure Kelley received meals without salt and packed with enough protein to help build back her strength. Kelley particularly enjoys the grain salads and appreciates the nourishment she gets with each meal.

Kelley believes the meals from God’s Love were an essential part of her recovery. After enduring cardiac rehab, several hospitalizations, and more, by summer 2021 Kelley felt mentally and physically strong enough to start working and to stop receiving food from God’s Love. Today, Kelley works at a New York City hospital and is well-equipped to prepare nutritious meals on her own. She wants to encourage anyone who is eligible to invest in their own recovery and reach out to God’s Love. Kelley shares:

“Without these meals, I wouldn’t have recovered from congestive heart failure. You might be able to get by eating the bare minimum but doing so won’t help you get better. Your meals are just as important as your medicine regimen.”

As Kelley continues to grow stronger each day, she is looking forward to returning to some of her favorite hobbies like cycling and swimming in the near future.

1.23.23 / Clients

Numbers Don’t Lie: Serving More than Ever in 2022

Last year, God's Love cooked and home-delivered medically tailored meals for more than 10,500 individuals, and we delivered more than 3.2 million meals! We do this with the dedicated hearts and hands of thousands of volunteer…