Melanie Potts


I’ll never forget how I met Lisa Bartlett. Through Facebook sell page when I lived in Jonesboro, Illinois. She bought a TV off of me for her kids. We kinda connected because she’s a kind heart and it shows. Three days later she messaged me that her husband had died. I couldn’t believe it. I had no clue what sepsis was. Little did I know that not 2 years later I would be losing my mother in law to sepsis. She fell n broke her hip in the nursing home turns out she had a UTI she was going back n forth to the bathroom a lot because of the UTI and fell and broke her hip.

Then last January I had my bout with severe septic shock. I had got the flu Jan 1st, it was so bad I went to my local ER. (Sepsis and Influenza) My fever was very high. Couldn’t see straight. My  02 sat was in the low 80s. They kept me. They gave me fluids, treated me for the flu with Tamiflu, etc. O2sats got in the low 70s .I told them I was going to die. I knew I was. The doctor said I needed to go home on antibiotics. Chest x-ray, CT scan showed nothing.

I could hear the respiratory therapist and doctor arguing in the hall. The doctor discharged me. I could barely walk to my vehicle. The respiratory therapist followed me out and thank God! Called an ambulance from the parking lot. They took me to another hospital in Mt. Vernon, Illinois. My left lung was 70% collapsed. I had fever of over 106.8. O2 sat was 77. They knocked me out for the night. I don’t remember anything.

Next morning I was being prepped for chest tube surgery. Most painful thing I’ve ever experienced! 6 of morphine and 3 versed, I still felt it. 11 days later the chest tube came out and the catheter. I had a slight UTI and pain in my bowels. (Sepsis and Urinary Tract Infections) But I started doing better and was sent home. I was home 1 day and I really felt like I was going to die. My sister was going to see my uncle at another hospital ( life support) for a broken hip, fluid in lungs, septic. They were pulling the plug on him that day. I told her take me with you, I’m dying. I was literally. Bloody stools, high fever, vomiting black stuff.

I couldn’t concentrate at all. Got to the hospital and she went to ICU to deal with my uncle. They paged her to come back to ER. I had a perforated bowel, afib, and my  kidneys had shut down. (Sepsis and Perforated Bowel) My lung was deflated again. I still had stitches in from my chest tube removal. They were wrapping me up to fly me to another hospital. I argued with them to send me by ambulance because I was afraid to fly in a helicopter. The doctor said you won’t make it by ambulance. So I gave up and went by helicopter. I was so sick I didn’t care anymore.

When we landed I remember paddles and cold goo on my chest and them saying welcome back . The doctors and nurses were hooking me up to every tube and wire you could think of and the doctor, talking very loud, saying Miss Potts. You are very ill you have a 20% chance of survival. We’ve called your dad to come make arrangements for you. But if you survive tonight your chance goes up considerably. Can you make it tonight for me ?

I squeezed his hand and I went to lala land. I was in a medically induced coma for 3 or 4 days, I don’t remember for sure. 26 days in the hospital, I survived. I lost my hair my eyebrows and eyelashes toenails, had a stroke, lost my job, relationships, my normal way of life. I remember when they told me I was in severe septic shock, I saw Lisa Bartlett’s face in my mind and I thought, God help me you can use this for your glory. I think that’s the only reason I lived.

I’m still one toenail short. I have weird hair now. It was straight and blonde now it’s orange and curly. I have one kidney that didn’t rebound. In fact it’s not doing well at all, keeps decreasing in function. I still hurt in my rib cage where the chest tube was. I have muscle wasting and most days my brain is my worst enemy. I had to have a complete hysterectomy 6 months later due to some ugly cells called cancer. I feel like crap most days and I’ve lost all feeling in my right foot. But God isn’t done with me. This is not the end and I refuse to give up. There’s something I have to do. Maybe it’s this. DON’T GIVE UP YOU’RE WORTH IT YOU’RE STILL VIABLE PEOPLE STILL NEED YOU DO NOT QUIT!

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