By Liz York
The first question that is always asked about these last three months is, “What happened to you?”
Here is my story:
March 4 of this year (2018), I was helping plan a conference and also doing a fundraiser. On March 5, I passed two kidney stones that caused a major blockage on their way out. Sepsis toxins went through my body, attacking kidneys, heart and lungs. I was put into a medically induced coma for two weeks while doctors worked to save me. My family members were called, told I was hour-to-hour and that if they wanted to say goodbye, they should come right then.
After two weeks, the sepsis was beaten, and I woke up shocked to find I could not do anything for myself. Extensive rehab was needed to see how far I could recover.
I chose to move to Life Care [Center of] Sierra Vista [, Arizona,] for my rehab.
On my evaluation at Life Care, it was determined I was straight zeroes down the page. I couldn’t do anything. I needed physical therapy, occupational therapy, speech therapy plus work to refocus my mind and memory.
This battle was by far the hardest thing I have ever done. I was fortunate to have great therapists who believed I could bounce back and worked as hard as I did in challenging me every day. All my muscles and my body as a whole needed to be completely retrained to work together again. It was painful and difficult, but with the therapists working with me, my reward was astronomical. I am leaving Life Care with a walker. Soon I will be walking unassisted.
I’ll always remember the joy of the therapists as they clap and cheer when a patient stands up for the first time or takes their first steps.
Editor’s note: York was able to return home with assistance on May 25.