Cash Flow With Joe

A different side of financial freedom

A different side of financial freedom


We have had a rough last couple of days. Tuesday morning my son Seph woke me up from the living room sobbing at 4 a.m. I was in the back bedroom and it was loud enough to wake me up from across the house. When I got there, I found the ear infection that had started on Monday afternoon had my boy doubled over in pain and crying almost uncontrollably. We got some pain meds in him and he was able to calm down enough to go to sleep once the Motrin kicked in.


He is no stranger to an ear infection. As a matter of fact, he had a middle ear infection earlier in the month that our pediatrician prescribed some antibiotics for. But when the antibiotics didn’t help, our doctor told us it was probably viral and there was nothing we could do but wait for it to clear itself and manage pain with Motrin and Tylenol.


So when this started back up on Monday, we assumed it was the same thing.


We were wrong!


Wednesday morning the pain was pretty terrible. So we went to the first Urgent Care that opened that morning. Normally we would have gone to the pediatrician, but his office is closed on Wednesday. At Urgent Care, they said he had a pretty bad outer ear infection and prescribed antibiotic drops for it. And told us to continue with the Motrin/ Tylenol regiment we had been doing. So we did.


Once again on Thursday morning, we awoke to sobs. Now let me say this, my boy handles pain very well. For instance, we found out one time he had had a broken ankle after it healed when getting an x-ray for a totally different injury. So he’s tough, and sobs meant something was bad wrong.


We got on the phone with the pediatrician as soon as he opened and did a teleconference. After hearing the severity of the pain, how he hurt behind his ear and that he was looking pale, our doctor was worried the ear infection had spread and told us to get to the ER.


So off to AdventHealth Gordon we went. There we got a CAT scan that suggested he had something called mastoiditis, which  is where the ear infection had become so bad that it spread to the bone in his jaw, called the mastoid bone. If this was correct, his bone was literally infected. We didn’t even know that was a thing. They told us we would be admitted and probably transferred.


And just to tell you how painful this thing was, they gave him morphine right before we left, and it wore off before the ambulance got us to Chattanooga.


As I’m writing this, I’m sitting in a room with Seph at Children’s Hospital at Erlanger. They have his pain manageable and have been treating him with intense intravenous antibiotics. As it turns out, mastoiditis was once a fatal illness. That’s because an infection in the mastoid bone does not respond to oral antibiotics. It has to be in an  IV, for seven to ten days.


I’m grateful for the staff here at Children’s Hospital. They have really been good to Seph. And if all goes well, we will be able to come home in a day or two.



But while I am sitting here looking at all the other parents that are staying in hospital, I can’t help wondering how in the world they are making ends meet. You see, their child needs them… here with them. They can’t just get up and leave to go to work. So not only are they dealing with the emotional pain of watching their child suffer, but they have the weight of their impending finances weighing on them, too.


My heart truly goes out to them.


Thankfully, we invested in rental properties. And our rents come in whether I’m at the office, or sitting in the hospital for days. And the positive cash flow from those properties takes care of our monthly needs. And not having the worry of how we are going to pay our bills is amazing, especially when dealing with issues like this. Needless to say, we are very thankful for our rentals. And that’s a different side of financial freedom that you may have not considered, but that Ashley and I are very grateful for.


***Update*** We are home, Seph is on the mend and doing very well.


Joe and Ashley English buy houses and mobile homes in Northwest Georgia. For more information or to ask a question, go to or call Joe at 678-986-6813.

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