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My Mommy's Story by Chrystal


I just found Behind the Gray and I have to say that it's definitely encouraging to see that I'm not the only one in this boat. My Mom was admitted to the Foothills Hospital on September 18, 2010. She had just got home from work and complained of dizziness while her and my Dad were doing the laundry. She passed out and stopped breathing. My Dad called the ambulance and administered CPR.

She was initially taken to the Rocky View (non- trauma). When they got her to the hospital, she was sitting up and responding but very lethargic. They took her into CT and this is when they found the SAH. After CT she deteriorated and had a second bleed. She was rushed to the Foothills Hospital and this is when my Dad came and got me from work.

We got to the hospital and were rushed right into things. I have never been so scared in my life. It's so crazy that she was laughing and being her busy self and the next she has tubes shoved down her throat and requiring machines to keep her alive. The doctors came in and told us what had happened. We looked at CTs of her brain and they told us that we had to decide if she would want to live with severe deficits. I thought that the craziest decisions I was going to be making this year were what courses I would be taking in my first year of university, not choosing if my Mom was going to live or die. However, my Dad and I decided that we needed my Mom around to see me turn 18.

They put together a fabulous team of surgeons and Mom was taken to surgery at 11:30 pm. That was the longest night of my life. I sat awake in the ICU waiting room, just praying and wishing I was with her. I did manage to count the dots on one rectangle of the ceiling. 11, 220…

At 8 am we still hadn't heard anything from the doctors, so my Dad called up. It turned out that she was in the ICU and the surgery had went well. They managed to go into the left side of her brain and clip the aneurism with a titanium clip.

The next few weeks were absolutely crazy. My Mom battled pneumonia, was on multiple medications, had severe vasospasm and suffered a stroke. She also had to have a craniotomy to remove part of her skull to give the brain more room to swell. The doctors had told us that there would be lots of ups and downs and that was definitely the case.

The day of my 18th birthday was September 28, ten days after the incident. This was the first day that she started opening her eyes. I could not have asked for a better present. I guess this was the day when things started turning around.

She was moved out of the ICU about 3 weeks ago and is now in the neurological ward. She is doing very well with recovering and is blowing all the doctors away. The doctors told us that she would not move her right side; however she has now started to move her right leg. They told us that she would not speak again but she is beginning to get some slurred words out. They told us that she would not get her skull back on for 3 months and it went on last week. They told us that she would have a feeding tube for 6 months and she started eating solid food yesterday.

She is going to physiotherapy every day and is doing well with it. She even stood with bars yesterday! She is also starting speech therapy today. My Mom is the strongest person I know and I am so proud of her. She is so tough and I can already see some of the old her shining through. She is stubborn and I have never been so grateful for that quality. On the weekend, we got her outside in a wheelchair for the first time. She got to see her puppy and that made her so happy.

I have been up at the hospital every day after school. It's been tough dealing with my first year of university and this whole situation, but I am doing well. My Mom would want me to keep up with my school work. I believe that my Dad and I have a great support system and that is what is keeping us going.

It's been tough, but I believe that everything happens for a reason. I can't wait to proceed with recovery and see how much my Mom can prove the doctors wrong!

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