illness

‘My mother and stepdad sent me with a strange man in the middle of the night. ‘Was I traded for drugs?’ I was ten years old.’: Woman overcomes childhood trauma and rape, ‘I learned the power of letting go’

“As I threw the rock into the river, I said, ‘I forgive you,’ letting go of all the pain and resentment I had been carrying. Don’t get me wrong… the people who abused me in my past, who were supposed to care for me and protect me, did NOT deserve my forgiveness.”

‘My shortness of breath got worse. Then came the fever and cough. I was told at the ER, ‘You have lung damage.’ I finally broke down and cried.’: Mom struggling to recover from COVID-19 pleads ‘please don’t underestimate how horrible this illness is’

“Out of nowhere I got VERY sick this afternoon, so my husband sent my butt to the ER. When you’re sick you want your mama, your sister, your brother, your dad, your friends. You want your support system. I finally broke down and cried.”

‘She said, ‘It’s your dad. There’s something wrong. The cops said they found him on the ground.’ We still had so many questions.’: Woman details life with drug-addicted father, ‘I’m not mad at you’

“‘You need to stop what you’re doing or you’ll end up dead.’ I’d see him drive by with another woman. When my mom decided to divorce him, he didn’t show up. We stood at the court house and looked out the window from the top floor. The doctor approached my brother and I. ‘You have to make a decision to let him off the machines.’ We still had so many questions.”

‘Kerri, get a grip!’ the doctor said. I could only take Tylenol after surgery. I was sure I was going to die.’: Woman with arthrogryposis muscle disorder says ‘nothing is impossible with a fighter’s soul’

“I looked like a pretzel, but my mom wasn’t able to hold me for hours. Doctors started discussing ‘options.’ They told her I wouldn’t be able to do much. They said I would be better off if my parents decided to sign me over to the state. My mom immediately asked to be transferred.”

‘Bring me breakfast in the morning if we’re still here,’ joked the doctor. The treatments were painful, I tried to be brave.’: Woman describes her journey with Complex Regional Pain Syndrome, ‘I never had a childhood, but hope I can have a good adulthood’

“I was always fragile. When I wasn’t sick, I was injuring myself. My skin would turn purple and red with spots, and everything burned to the touch. I was probed with questions and faced with students’ and faculty’s disbelief. ‘You don’t look sick.’ Using the school’s only elevator resulted in harassment.”

‘You need to isolate immediately.’ The chances of survival for me are extremely low.’ : Woman with asthma, stage 4 endometriosis says, ‘I’ve been fighting my whole life, I don’t plan on stopping now’

“A doctor said, ‘Everyone is going to get this virus before it ends,’ and it terrifies me. I take medication on a daily basis just to breathe normally. My body is weak. I have so much left in life I want to see and do. I’ve been fighting my whole life, and I don’t plan on stopping now.”

‘It started with what I thought were seasonal allergies. 2 days later, the chest pain began.’: 35-year-old mom positive with COVID-19 after ‘following all the rules’

“I woke up completely drenched in sweat. I called the COVID-19 hotline. 5 minutes later, a very condescending man came on. I was told I sounded ‘fine’ and was likely just ‘exaggerating’ the symptoms due to anxiety. I had a seizure. Blood had started pouring out of my mouth. I wouldn’t realize just how much until later.”

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