GISH Hall of Fame 2019

Welcome to the world’s weirdest, wildest, most beautiful and strange images and videos from the
Greatest International Scavenger Hunt!

The submissions below were selected by HARSHers, Misha and the Judges to be the best of the best of GISH 2019. Enjoy exploring the weirdness! Browse through them, or click on an item number to see the top submissions.

Item 219: Caregivers of those with life-threatening illnesses or chronic health conditions sacrifice a lot but are often forgotten. Let's fix that. Make buddy care-bags: one bag for the caregiver, and one for the person they support. Contact a hospital, hospice, care facility, caregiver or person with a life-threatening illness or chronic condition to find out what would be most helpful to include in the bags, then donate them directly or through a caregiving organization near you. Submit a photo of the care bags -- the recipients need not be depicted. Tell us the story of the person you helped in the comments.

Team SporkAlpacasofMayhem

Comment: My sister was diagnosed with m.e. at age 11 since then she has also been diagnosed with fibromyalgia, chronic pain and depression. Her health has deteriorated since her diagnosis to the current day at age 30 where she is virtually bed bound. As there is not a lot that can help her care bag consits mainly of things meant to brighten her day and make her smile. My mum has been her carer throughout it all doing anything and everything she can to help. Her care bag consists of comfort and relaxation as she rarely takes time for herself.

Team DeusExMishina

Comment: My stepdad was recently diagnosed with stage 4 glioblastoma, the most aggressive form of brain cancer. He rapidly developed symptoms, including partial blindness and paralysis on the left side of his body. My mom has been by his side helping him navigate these changes and providing support.

Team Narcoleptic_MooseLovesWARPParty

Comment: These were made for a woman named Laura and her partner Lynn (caregiver). I was fortunate enough to meet them and talk about what they needed most. In March 2014 Laura was hospitalized for a blood clot and through testing discovered she had Chromic Lymphocytic Leukemia, her second cancer diagnosis. She has Hodgkin's disease when she was 29 and battled it with 6 months of chemo. She was on Watch and Wait for 2 years until she progressed to the point of needing treatment. 5 years later her body stopped responding to medication and she seeked out a specialist at Duke Cancer Center. The doctor at Duke stated that her CLL is in an aggressive state which is why the medications stooped working. She is currently in search for a Stem Cell Donor Match and will ideally begin the transplant in September. The process will take 3 months in which she will relocate to Duke.

Team TeamFreeWill2017

Team TrashBrigade

Comment: Jeralyn went to the hospital on July 4, 2018 after being put under for a simple cleaning at the dentist the day before. They hadn’t realized that she had double pneumonia and was also septic so by putting her under, had aggravated her lungs enough that she wasn’t getting the proper level of oxygen. Shortly after being admitted, she had a heart attack that permanently damaged the left side of her heart. Jeralyn's oxygen levels were also recording as consistently low so her doctor decided it would be best if she had a tracheotomy and a feeding tube – an action which made her no longer eligible to stay in their hospital and instead need to go to Utah for specialized care at a hospital there. Her mother, Paulette, dropped everything and moved to Utah so that her daughter wouldn’t have to be alone while she was there. Paulette kept close connection with the staff and insisted on learning every bit of the care that Jeralyn required every day – from trachea cleaning and feeding tube care to how to properly dress her wounds when she needed to be cleaned. Through her willingness to learn, she showed the doctors that she was a proper person to take care of her daughter and allow her to come home so that she wouldn’t have to spend the rest of her time in a hospital and closer to her family in Idaho. Paulette’s basket has books, gift cards, and various pampering self-care items, while Jeralyn’s has new sheets, pajamas, markers, and notebooks to help keep her entertained and looking good.

Team CasTastrophe

Comment: I am a music therapist. The reason I became a music therapist was because of my grandmother who was diagnosed with Alzheimer's when I was a freshman in high school. She died when I was a Junior in college. During those 7 years my mom and I watched as she progressed through the disease and towards the end lost her ability to speak. However when the nursing home music therapist would visit her, she would sing all the church hymns she grew up singing. And for that moment we had our grandmother and mother back. I wanted to be able to offer that opportunity to others, so I majored in music therapy when I went to college. I have been a music therapist in long term care and hospice care for over 10 years now. Because of that, I see a lot of children become the caregiver of their parents diagnosed with Alzheimer's or a related dementia. When I saw this item get added, I did not hesitate to claim it for my team. I am happy to give back to those I see who give so much and get so little inn return, sometimes not even gratitude but the opposite response from the loved one they are caring for. It. Is. Hard. Maybe the hardest thing this person will ever have to do. Right now a member of my church is going through this exact thing with her mother. Caring for her at home. Having to drop out of her social groups and social activities to be there for her mom. She doesn't come to church often right now because of the additional morning care her mother requires. She is on hospice and has a visiting social worker, home health aide, and nurse, but they cannot always be there. Taking care of a loved one at home is still very costly. She is tired. She is sad. and as a church family we do what we can to support her. Her mother is very progressed in the disease. Often chair bound and losing the muscle strength to always keep her head in a comfortable position. She needs a lot of sensory stimulation and social stimulation otherwise she calls out and cries. My church family assisted me in creating these care bags for them and we will deliver them together on Sunday after church. The descriptions of the items are in the picture. Thank you for allowing me this opportunity to give back to her. I hope this changes the lives of many.

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