In March of 2018 I was 23 years old. Living in my first apartment with my then boyfriend (now husband), working 30 some odd hours a week at Home Depot. Things were going great. One morning I complained that I was feeling over tired and had a bad back ache, but I powered through my shift and went home. By the next morning I couldn’t got out of bed, let alone move. I had pain radiating all over my body. I woke my boyfriend up and we started the 45 minute drive to my doctor. Once there, my doctor noticed I had a rash covering my entire body. He immediately called ahead to the local hospital and told us to drive as fast as we could.
Once there they ran every test they could to try to figure out what was going on. I ended up staying for 8 day, and found out I’m allergic to several different antibiotics. I was released and sent home, but the story doesn’t end there. For over a month I was off of work. I would get winded and nearly fall anytime I walked from my living room to my kitchen. During this time my boyfriend got a job offer in a city 5.5 hours away that we decided to take. We made the move with the help of family and friends and I went back to work. One week after moving I relapsed with sepsis. This time landing in the hospital for 15 days. My heart stopped twice, once during each stay. Both ended up with the nurses and doctors having to shock me back to life.
13 years later I’ve gotten married, had two children and am healthy for the most part. I tend to get sick easily and stay sick for longer. I’ve learned which antibiotics I can and can not take. But I’m alive, so I take advantage of that because it was not always clear whether or not I would survive having sepsis. When I left the hospital the first time they only gave me a single sheet of paper that basically said “You Have Sepsis.” Everything I’ve learned about it since I’ve learned by researching on my own. The doctors aren’t even sure how I contracted it in the first place.