Margaret Gray

Hello, my name is Margaret. My friends call me Maggie. On July twentieth of 2004, I left my house to go to the OBGYN to have a boil lanced. Only it was not a boil. It was NF. My fiance and I had been to the zoo in Columbia, SC on the weekend of the eleventh that was on Saturday. I made the mistake of using the public facilities while there. I am also a diabetic so when at about five pm that evening, I suddenly lost all my strength, I thought that it was due to my diabetes. We made it out of the zoo and once in the car I started feeling better, so we went to a nice little restaurant and had dinner, then we came home. I slept all night and the next morning I went out to sit in my swing and watch my dog playing. I could not even stay awake for that. When I came back inside the house and all I could do was to sleep I knew that something was wrong. I started using black salve on the boil that was on my backside. I thought that it would bring it to a head. I let it go for a week and on that next Saturday I went to see a doctor who refereed me to an OBGYN. When the doctors there examined me, they immediately knew that I was in bad shape. They gave me a shot of something while I was waiting for them to get me admitted into the hospital. I was very woozy from that drug. Once in my hospital room, my nurse gave me a shot of demerol and I was out of it. Although demerol and I do not agree with one another. The infection had grown from my left buttock all the way to one side and the top of my vaginal area, into my left thigh and the left side of my stomach. I had surgery on the twenty second and twenty third of July. A week later, I had a third surgery and the week after that, a fourth surgery. A couple of weeks later I had a fifth surgery on my left thigh. After my first surgery my doctor told my fiance and friends that it would be seventy two hours before they would know if I was going to make it. My friends called my family and told them about my condition. My brother and one remaining uncle came all the way from Virginia to South Carolina to see me in the ICU. I was very happy to see them but knew that it was serious when they traveled three hours to see me and that is not a regular thing for them to do. I give complete and total credit to God for sparing my life. I also had a wonderful team of doctors. My surgeon is one in a million and the nurses also, everyone who fought so hard to save my life had the hands of God guiding them and angels sitting upon their shoulders. My fiance is also one in a million. He has supported me and stood by me and I thank the lord for him. But my best friend outdid herself when it came to taking care of me. She was at the hospital every morning by eight thirty and stayed until noon to make sure that I had my breakfast and lunch. She was there for my wound care, she held my hand and talked to me, and I do not think I would have been as strong without her. She would leave at noon and be back at the hospital by five thirty pm to see to my dinner. She would make me eat, for food was not my strong point at the time. I had days of nausea and she cleaned up after me, washed my hair, bathed me, and cleaned me up after a visit to the bathroom. So I tip my hat to my best friend. You know who your friends are for in times of trouble when the rest of the world walks out the door your friends walk in the door. I would also like to tip my hat to my physical therapist and my wound care nurses. They are amazing ladies. I am home now. I was released from the hospital on September twenty fourth. I still have a catheter and my friend is seeing to my bandage changes every day. Once again, I would like to thank the lord and everyone who fought so hard for me to live.