Hey, this is Mary (Nayun). For those of you who know me well, you'd know that the last thing I want to do is ask other's for help. I pride myself in being independent and self-reliant, but my mother getting sick happened all too fast and all too big for me to handle. The only thing I can do for my mom at this point in time is ask for help.
(1 week before the incident)
My mother, Myung Hee (Elizabeth) Park, is a parent who lives for her kids. She ran a dry cleaners by herself for 12 years, so that she could provide for my brother and me. She would hold in her urine many times because she feared to miss a customer and lose the extra dollar, the extra dollar that would go towards my brother's and my education. She was the first one to teach me and my brother about unconditional love. My mother is the one person in the world that I love more than myself and she could've been gone in a matter of hours.
On 2/22/18, we took my mother into the ER where she was diagnosed with sepsis, which further developed into septic shock with multiple organ dysfunction syndrome. Despite giving her antibiotics, her white blood cell and procalcitonin levels kept increasing to levels that were the highest some doctors and nurses have seen in their career. Both her kidneys were failing and the liver was starting to fail as well. We were unsure that she was going to make it as septic shock has a very high mortality rate. In fact, multiple doctors have told me that it truly is a miracle she is alive.
Due to the septic shock, my mother's blood pressure dropped drastically with a very irregular heart rate so we started her on multiple blood pressure medications to keep her blood pressure up. Unfortunately, her extremities have necrotized due to the minimal circulation from the blood pressure medications and her fingers and toes have resulted in gangrene (dead tissue).
Currently, we are unsure how much of her hands and feet are going to to make it. We are waiting for the body to demarcate on its own and then, she will require amputations and prosthetics of both hands and feet in the future once she is stronger. There was substantial atrophy of her muscles from being strictly bedridden for weeks. My mother, once a healthy and independent woman, can no longer lift her arms to eat or sit up in a chair, let alone walk. She has a long and intense recovery with physical therapy, speech therapy (from being intubated multiple times and for long period of time), and occupational therapy.
My mother almost died. No, that would be an understatement. Just looking at her blood results, symptoms, and the severity of her sepsis, she should have died. However, my mom is the strongest woman I know and her strength is what kept her alive. Recently, she told me, "It's okay if I don't have hands or feet. I'm alive. I'm grateful and happy that I will be able to see you and your brother grow." My mom's passion is cooking. She's the best cook, trust me. For my friends who've tried her food, you'll agree. So when she said that to me, I cried. A lot. For the 432489th time.
By some miracle and everyone's thoughts and prayers, my mom is alive. She has a long road to recovery ahead of her and my family needs a miracle to make sure she gets there. The surgery, prosthetics, rehab centers, therapy appointments, medications, etc. will probably add up to more than 25,000, but please help my family start her recovery period. I'm still in disbelief that I find myself in a position to write this, but here I am. My mother is the sweetest, brightest, warmest and strongest woman I know and deserved none of this. She has done everything for my brother and me, so please help me do something for my mom. Thank you.
- Sanza Kazadi
- Hannah Shin
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