Rebecca Cook

Hi my name is Rebecca Cook and I live in Chandler Arizona and this is my story. I turned 50 on February 16, 2011. Since my birthday fell on a weekday my husband surprised me with a birthday party on February 12th the Saturday before my birthday. Turns out good thing he did. Valentines day February 14, 2011, I wasn't feeling good and continued to get worse through out the day. I was having a lot of pain in my right groin area. About a month prior to this I had an IVC filter put in to catch blood clots going from my leg up to my lungs. I was thinking something was wrong because I was having a lot of pain in the area they went in to insert this filter. Buy the time my husband got home from work I knew something was wrong, my leg was getting red and really starting to hurt. We left for the emergency room right away. I remember walking into the er and walking up to the desk, that is the last thing I remember, That was February 14, 2011. The next thing I know I am opening my eyes looking up at my husband standing over me saying "I'm sorry, please don't hate me" It took me awhile to realize that I was in the hospital it was now February 20, 2011. I will never forget the next words I heard. My husband was standing there telling me that he had to let them take my leg in order to save my life. I don't know how long I just starred at him before I finally looked down to see what he was talking about, but I know that it seemed forever for all of this to sink in. I couldn't make myself look away, I knew that what I was looking down and seeing was my body, but even though I was seeing it my mind wouldn't let me accept the reality I woke up to. How did this happen how did I get so sick so fast that for the six days that I was unconscious my husband was told a couple of times that I may not make it through the night. I was on life support, my body had started shutting down I was loosing the fight right up to the moment that they decided that the infection that started in my leg (groin) was so bad that the only way to save my life was to take my leg. So Three days after my 50th birthday my right leg was amputated above the knee. And not just once they operated on it three different times taking a little more off each time. I had never even heard of necrotizing fascitis before, but I can honestly tell you know I will never forget it. Here I am 50 years old and I am having to learn how to live all over again. I woke up one morning and life as I knew it was gone. Nothing is the same, I can't play in the snow with my beautiful seven year old adopted son, I can't get in and out of my two man spa tub any more. I can get in my car and drive but I can't get out any place because I am not able to load my wheel chair into the car so it sits in the garage until I get back and I just back up to it. So I have to ask for help if I have to go to the doctor, the grocery store basically I have lost the capability of being independent. Oh if economy didn't get so bad a couple of years ago we probably could afford to get a handicapped van for me to drive. But with times being what they are today. We don't have $5,000. for a down payment nor can we afford 5 to 6 hundred dollar a month payments right now either. Then to make matters even worse I had what they call a failed flap. The skin on my stump was not growing back together. I had an 18 inch long cut and 14 of those inches were wide open. So I ended up having to wear a wound vac for a little over three months and going into the hyperbaric oxygen chamber daily for 40 treatments. I will never forget sitting in my hospital room and the surgeon tells my and my husband that I will never walk again that I will be in a wheel chair for the rest of my life. It has been 10 months now and still there isn't a day I don't cry, or long for the life I use to have. I miss being able to go to the store if I needed something. I miss being able to go visit friends but now find that not many people have ramps into the house. I miss feeling like I was contributing to my family instead of being a burden. I miss walking out to the mail box and stopping and talking to a neighbor. I miss being able to get down on the floor and play with my son.