Susi Wolf's Recovery

I am raising money for my dear friend, storyteller Susi Wolf, to support her recovery from cancer and myesthenia gravis. 

Susi has brought joy to thousands of children of all ages through her character Mrs. Claus, and healing to adults through her shamanic readings. Now she desperately needs our help.

In November 2017,  Susi was diagnosed with breast cancer and was operated on in December.  In the following months, Susi suffered many complications and setbacks, including pneumonia, second-degree radiation burns, and the auto-immune disease Myesthenia Gravis, arising from raging infection throughout her body. To add to the trauma she endured, in August Susi became trapped in a locked closet for three days without food and water. Near death, she was able to break through the door, crawl across the floor to the phone, where she called for help. 

Susi is now in the care, including subsequent emergency room visits, of the University of New Mexico Hospital Cancer Care and Neurology Centers, where she is receiving therapy to support her healing from the radiation burns and myesthenia gravis.

Susi has not been able to work for the last year and her medical expenses have mounted. She is in desperate of funds for her continuing treatment and for assistance with her home health care. She is not able to access the additional funding she needs from Medicare, the State, or cancer care associations. In addition to her physical and emotional trauma, her financial trauma is devastating.

She also needs transportation help to the hospital, support with grocery shopping, and other activities of daily living that she has presently lost the ability to accomplish on her own.

Here's a description of Susi's ordeal in her own words:

Journey of Healing – Emerging from the Closet Tomb – September 14, 2018

Those who have been with me on this journey know all that I have overcome. Two breast cancer surgeries, a near death experience, two weeks in a rehab hospital, second-degree radiation burns, a diagnosis of Myasthenia gravis and more. Just two weeks ago once again I was put into an ambulance and taken to ER from a medication reaction.

What else could possibly happen? I now have the answer in the form of a freak accident.

The end of July, I went into my bedroom closet on a Wednesday around 2:30 PM to look for something. I did not emerge again until Saturday around 5:30 PM.

It was Wednesday, July 18, 2018. I was beginning to feel a bit stronger from a long road of health challenges. 

I received my new med alert bracelet for the Myasthenia Gravis but it was a bit tight. I remember in my jewelry bag on the back of my bedroom closet door I had some jewelry extensions. Perfect! I went into the closet, the door closed and I rummaged about looking for said extenders. I found them in a small plastic bag. I grabbed the doorknob but it just turned around and around. I kept trying – twisting and turning both ways but the door was latched. It was not locked, just shut. But the doorknob would not open it. I was in complete shock and denial for quite a while until the reality hit – I was truly trapped inside my bedroom closet. ! No one could hear me (my triplex unit is isolated in the back with thick walls). I have no family so no one would come looking for me. 

I perched on a hamper that holds my art supplies to relieve the pain from my hips and back (osteoarthritis). I was strangely calm. Twisting on the doorknob. Pulling the door. I found scissors in my art supply box and used them to pry off two of the pins that held the door hinges. The third hinge was far too high for me to reach. I pulled on the bottom of the door with all my might but it was latched and would not give way from the hinges.

I put a huge plastic container against the wall to sit on and think. I prayed and prayed. I intuitively called to people in my life. “Please, help. Please sense that something is wrong and call the police for a welfare check.” I asked Creator for a miracle. I beseeched Mother Mary and Jesus to rescue me. Nothing.

And then the plastic container broke, dumping me on the floor. I laid down close to the bottom of the door for air. The heat inside the closet was unbearable (it was later estimated that it was 105 degrees to 110 degrees inside the closet).

I used my cane to hit the door but nothing budged. I feared it was a solid wood door. I periodically would bang my cane on the wall and yell. I could not hear any outside noise at all.

For three (3) full days I laid on the floor in dark (mostly) convinced. My closet was a tomb of death. I prayed fervently but have never felt more alone. Many times I cried out loud, “My God, why have You forsaken me?” My usual sense of angelic presence was absent. No Mother Mary. No Jesus. Just dark and quiet.

I used the cane to reach up and turn on the light every once in a while. I did it sparingly as I had no idea when the bulb might burn out.

Inside my closet were boxes of my animal biofacts I use in storytelling programs, plus all my magic, puppets, and storytelling props. I found paper so I could keep track of the days when I saw light underneath the door.

I spent time looking through all my beloved things – animal items, props, puppets, etc. I sang songs. I told myself stories. By the second day I was in and out of consciousness. I began to hallucinate. It truly were days of fogginess. I was so weak I propped myself against the wall when sitting up. 

I could feel my body starting to shut down. I begged Creator to please come take me and end the suffering. I was in so much pain I cannot describe it. It was like being in hell and I knew it would get worse before I finally died. That’s why I was asking Creator to take me out of it. But I would black out and then wake up. 

Late afternoon on Saturday (the third day) I had my old balloon box and found Shaboom’s (my former clown self) old metal balloon pump. It was as it Another’s Hands had mine as I picked it up and hit the closet door. After 4 or 5 whacks the door cracked. My adrenaline kicked in and I started hitting the door with mighty force and broke a hole through on the inside. I then broke another hole on the outside. As I laid there, I reached out and turned the doorknob on the outside door and it opened!

I slowly began to move forward but it took me an hour to crawl from the closet to the front room, reaching the phone for 911. There were about 10 firefighters and paramedics who showed up. I was in and out of being awake and in very dire shape. They worked on me for a long time as it was not safe to move me yet. Finally they loaded me into the ambulance and talked to the trauma doctors all way to UNM Emergency. 

I remember as we crashed the ER doors two women trauma doctors standing in the hallway yelling, “This way! Get her in here now!” There were about 5 or 6 people all working on me at the same time and it was eerily quiet. Again, I was in and out of lucidity. I remember the doctors telling me how lucky I was and that I unbelievably strong to survive. It was still touch and go for a bit.

I begged for water but they said I could not have it. My kidneys were shutting down and it would make me sicker. I had IVs going in several places. Many hours passed and sometime during the night they moved me from trauma to a room. And I got water. I drank until they took it away from me.

I was in the hospital for a few days and they were amazed how well I did. Finally I was sent home with follow-up visits and to start physical therapy to regain strength and repair the muscle damage that had been done.

So, from a Tomb of Death I emerged on the third day to live again. 

The emotional trauma has also taken a toll and PTSD has been provoked. But I am making positive steps to release it and regain feeling safe. I actually went into the closet the other day, sat on my walker, closed the door and sang “Amazing Grace.” This is a huge step!!!!

Thank you for sharing this part of the journey with me. Unexpected. Traumatizing. But I know there are reasons for all of this and being in the closet was a transformative vision quest for me. Not of my choosing. But then, Thy Will be done is always my motto.

I am out of the tomb. I am growing stronger. I am a warrior survivor living to tell the tale.

My dear friend, Juliet Bruce, has put a GoFundMe page up. If you are able, all donations are greatly appreciated as my medical and living expenses are in devastation. Please share with others who may be generous also. I don’t want anyone to feel pressure, but know how much I appreciate it. The link is:https://www.gofundme.com/ support-susi-wolf039s-recov ery

Blessings to all (and to me too!). Thank you for saving me, Creator.
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Organizer and beneficiary

Juliet Bruce 
Organizer
New York, NY
Susi Wolf 
Beneficiary
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