This is a resolution to a love story that unfolded here last year. A few months over a year ago as I lay dying in a hospital my dear friend Siu started a thread to help my husband to deal with my illness. And to add prayers to help in saving my life. I call this a love story because my dear Prince Scotty poured the love that was deep in his heart to everyone. Then, he shared my healing moments. Now I want to share this open letter with you all. I want first to thank you because I knocked on the door and was sent away because the Lord heard your prayers. I so appreciate all of your words of prayer and good wishes. Without you, I am not so sure I would still be here. The Lord chose to save my life, for what reason I am not sure yet.
I share the story of my survival and God's part in it to everyone that listens. I know if it were not for the Lord and all the people who asked him to spare me I would not be here sharing this with you. If you are sharing this, then you know what transpired in my life, but I will share again.
On April 4, 2007, I became very ill and went to the emergency room. I knew full well that I was sick and that it was bad. I knew that I was close to death but I didn't quite know how close. The last thing I remember that day was telling the triage nurse how much I hurt. The next thing I knew was it was April 28, 2007, and my wonderful husband was telling me what had happened.
I could not move my right arm or hand. I had suffered a stroke following surgery, My memories from ICU are very sketchy and they probably always will be. The Lord has a way of protecting us from things that will harm us. The road back was a long hard one. They started physical therapy while I was still in ICU, I needed to recover the use of my arm and hand as well as start walking again. I am not a small woman now but I am getting smaller everyday.
In August 2006, after I found out how ill I was and that losing weight was essential, I weighed 427 pounds. Finding out that it was a lose weight or die situation opened my eyes. Thank the Lord. By April 2007, I had lost 100 pounds I still almost died anyway. I most assuredly would have had I not already started on the journey. God has held my hand and helped me down the road.
After almost two months in intensive care, I was moved gradually to different areas of the hospital as I improved. Then the earth seemed to fall beneath me. The team that moves people that cannot move themselves caused me to fall to the floor and being partially paralyzed I could not break my fall. I landed on my right shoulder and what had no feeling now hurt.
To add insult to injury, they were sending me to a nursing home for rehab. I was devastated I thought I would die there. I became so ill after being there a few days they sent me to the hospital again. I was over an hour and a half from home and I could only see Scotty on his days off. It felt to me that my children and my Mother did not want to make the long trip to see me. I was drowning in self pity, I had forgotten God and what he had already done. One day I received a visit from the hospital Chaplain and it all came into focus for me. The Lord had gotten me this far and it was time for me to start helping him by doing the work too. And take joy in my faith, that is when the healing really started for me, because I was healing inside.
I was sent back to the dreaded nursing home because my health had improved and I was a determined person one who was not going to give up. I was once again blessed by God with two angels. Jane who was my physical therapist, and Jennifer who was my occupational therapist. I call them my angels but don't by any means think they took it easy on me because they didn't. First thing I had to learn was how to get out of bed not being able to walk. I learned to pivot my body out using what was very like a plastic cutting board. I cried everyday as I did these things. I cried in frustration because I had always been a very independent person, and here I was a helpless person. But I was not going to stay that way.
On July 17, 2007, I managed to walk 133 very long steps with my walker and it was decided that they would petition to get me sent to a full time rehab center. I walked everyday and Scotty was there every day he had off cheering me on, bringing me get well cards and telling me stories of these wonderful complete strangers who had taken me into their hearts and their prayers.
In August, I was finally allowed to move to the full time rehab center in the neighboring town from home. I would be able to see my family everyday again. I got there and it was like starting all over again. And I would cry in frustration but the angel the Lord had sent to me there was named Chris and he pulled me aside and explained that crying and that kind of behavior would not be excepted. Oh, how I hated him and oh, how I cussed him in my head. And boy, was I going to show him! Of course, now I know that was what he had in mind.
I had 6 hours of classes five days a week and three hours on Saturdays. They pushed me hard. And thank the Lord I took everything they threw at me. I had an Ileostomy and a catheter making some things really hard but I kept up fighting. I was in a wheelchair. I had to self propel basically I was walking sitting down. Then I was given permission to walk with my walker with Scotty, and the kids. What a thrill.
After 18 days I was released to go home five months and one week from the day I went in the hospital. I could walk with a walker and I had movement back in my right hand. This was September 11, 2007. At that point I figured that I would probably never recover the use of my right arm. The only way I could move it was by moving it with my left arm. I was unable to go to the rehab center so physical therapy came to me. By the middle of October, I was given a cane to use and he had me trying the stairs.
But my right arm was stubborn. I took that matter into my own hands, I had the pleasure of meeting a stroke survivor who had started out in worse shape than I had, but she would put things higher, and higher, and force her self to reach. So, that is what I did. I have recovered the use of my right arm now. But the best thing for me is on July 17, 2008, I walked over two miles on the treadmill at the gym. What a difference a year makes.
I share all of this with you because this is not just my victory, but all of yours also. I can never thank you for the prayers and good wishes you sent to a perfect stranger all those miles away. I am here because God granted your prayers, thank you, thank you so very much.