Survivor Around the Globe, Michael Edwards

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Jenna EdwardsMy husband, Michael, suffered from a ruptured brain aneurysm on October 11, 2015. It only took him a month to recover and he was left with no permanent disabilities. We then went to a follow-up appointment on Dec 8, 2015 where it was decided he was suffering from hydrocephalus, causing vision issues and clonis. The doctors then decided to do a spinal tap to relieve that pressure the next morning. The procedure went fine. But it was only an hour after in the hospital where he suffered from a second ruptured aneurysm. This time it got much worse. The nightmare was truly just beginning. Forty-two days of ICU, transferred to a rehab unit near by where we were going back and forth from rehab to ICU for the next 2 months due to neglect from the rehab. I finally had him moved to Craig Hospital in Denver, Colorado where he had been immediately hospitalized, and released one week later back to rehab. Shortly after they discovered he had an infection in the bone flaps that were replaced end of March and removed them replacing with titanium mesh.

Finally mid-June 2016 (still in rehab) he finally started to talk, understood we were saying and what was going on around him. Ever since, he has gained improvement every single day. We were released to come home July 29th, 2016 where he came home in a wheelchair (full transfer assist), unable to walk. He now walks without any assistant devices and has recently been released to return to work. He is starting to drive with a passenger in the car, as he tends to get lost in the familiar town he grew up in.

Personality change has been the biggest difference. He is a god loving man now and has a love that is so genuine for anyone he meets. He is a lot more talkative than before, but that’s good a good thing! Every week he still makes huge progress and still attends therapy 3x a week.

Our lives were definitely changed after the second rupture – from financial worries, and getting to know each other again outside a hospital setting. Some challenges we faced were me as a mother, wife and caretaker, it seemed to be hard to find my role in his life. It was hard being a wife and a caretaker at the same time. Learning to let him be an adult was the most challenging when I made all his decisions for him for such a long time. It’s like giving your child keys for the first time and hoping and praying they make the safest decisions. We have found what works for us though, and how to handle new instances as they arise.

Michael and I have been together for 5 years and our anniversary is on April 20th. We have 6 kids (three mine, three his). Michael is a physician returning to practice (next week!) and has raced motocross since he was 5 years old. Our favorite thing to do is travel together, even if it’s a couple hours from home for a night or half way across the country. We still continue our date nights, they’re just much simpler.

The one thing that has not changed is his love for me or his family. Although my husband has had some depression during certain circumstances, he has accomplished everything he was told he wouldn’t. Miracles happen every single day, but this one seems to just blow me away. He has beat all the odds and I’ve never been more proud of someone in my life.

The Joe Niekro Foundation wants to thank Jenna Edwards, Michael’s wife, for submitting their incredible story and journey. We wish Michael the best in his return to work and continued success with recovery!

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