Finally, they took me to the ICU for tests and determined that my throat was closing – due to the tubes that had been inserted to feed me and help me breath while in the coma. So, they had to operate. While I was being wheeled into the operating room, and after they had given me a pill that was supposed to put me under, they shoved a paper in my hands and told me to sign it. They did not explain to me what the paper was. It was a release form. I remember feeling panicky – like something was going to go wrong – I kept telling them that something was going to go wrong with the surgery… I was so groggy, and I wanted to be able to breathe again, so I signed it.
They did a tracheotomy on me… I ended up with another tube in my throat for the next few weeks.
Christmas came (I still had the trach). My parents took me home for the holiday. Once I got home… things changed.
I was sitting on my bed in my room. Suddenly, I felt a tingling in my legs and they felt stronger. I swung my legs off the side of the bed and gingerly attempted to stand up. It worked! I walked out of the room alone! I felt like it was a Christmas miracle!
Two of my high school friends (not the ones that I partied with) came over to take me to see Star Wars. I was so excited to do something without the stupid wheelchair! I felt free!
After Christmas, I had to go back to the hospital. I really didn’t want to, but I did still have the tracheotomy… so, back I went.
A couple of weeks went by. I spent New Year’s Eve in the hospital… which kinda sucked. But, I was getting stronger and I had heard rumors that my trach would be coming out soon. So, I was hopeful for what the new year would bring.
Finally… the day came when the tube in my throat was removed. I was so excited… until I found out that my voice was forever changed. It was raspy and hard to understand.
I started voice therapy… but that didn’t really help at all – so I discontinued that.