Saturday, May 24, 2003 is a day I will never forget. Not because of the fact that it was the day of my eighth grade formal, but because it was the day that my mom’s life almost came to an end.
On that particular day, my mom was throwing my class an eighth grade formal because we went to a Christian school and dances weren’t allowed. So she took it on herself to give us one. Therefore, the day was spent decorating, cooking, preparing gift bags, etc. All the while, my brother and I complained because helping her was not how we planned to spend our Saturday. But at 4 o’clock everything was just about done and my dad told my mom he was going to take my brother to the activity center to wait on people to arrive, while he went to get ice for the event. Dad told me to stay with mom so I could help her load up the van.
On the way to the center, my mom realized she had forgotten the pot of potatoes so we had to go back home to get them. As she was loading them in the car, she dropped them and water sloshed out of the pot. I knew she would be mad so I ran into the house to get a towel. When I came back outside, she was sitting in the seat with her feet hanging out of the car. I handed her the towel and I could tell something was wrong. She told me that I needed to go get help. I ran across the street and got my neighbor.
Immediately my neighbor knew something was wrong. We called 911 and they sent an ambulance right away. My mom explained to the paramedics that her head felt like it was in a drum. They asked her to climb onto the stretcher and she informed them that she couldn’t move her legs. They immediately thought she might have had a stroke.
I was all alone and scared to death. I tried calling my dad but I got no answer. My uncle volunteered to go find dad and he happened to see his truck stopped at a relative’s. He ran in, told Dad what happened, and told him to get to the hospital.
After arriving at the hospital, my dad went in the ER to see my mom. An hour later he came out crying. He said my mom’s brain was bleeding and they were flying her to Moses Cone to meet a neurologist to see what was going on. And on top of that she was sick. To most people that was not very relevant but for my mom that was very unusual. My dad told everyone in the 35 years he had known my mother, he had never seen her throw up.
My dad wouldn’t allow me to come to Cone until I could come with my sister. We couldn’t get in touch with her until almost eleven o’clock so we didn’t arrive at the hospital till almost midnight. When we got there, the nurse said the doctor was talking to my dad. She pointed us down the hallway to where they were. To this day I can remember looking down that hallway and thinking it looked a mile long. I can still feel my heart pounding and my knees shaking. We arrived just in time to hear the doctor say that 90% of people die on the spot when an aneurysm bursts. I knew about aneurysms. My grandpa and great grandma had died from them. He told my dad the fact that she was still alive meant she was a fighter. However, with surgery, there was still no promise that she would make it. But Dad persisted that they go on.
They took us to see her before her surgery and I barely recognized her. She had so many tubes coming out of her that I could only see her cheeks on her face… not even her nose or mouth. I can still see all the monitors and hear the beep beep beep of them.
When we came out into the waiting room, there must have been fifty people in there that we knew! We all stood around praying for mom. Her surgery began at 1am and she came out of it at 4:30am. She had made it but she was in a coma.
After 1 week in a coma, 1 week in the highest level of intensive care, and 1 week in a regular room, my mom came home. The fastest anyone had ever recovered from something like that! Only .01% of people ever recovered as well as she did.
I’m blessed to say that my mom is still alive today and is doing just fine!