THE ULTIMATE EXPERIENCE
Come, sit with me, close your eyes, hold my hand, let's go far away from this place to the place in which you came from.
A Changed Life...
Last year on this date my life changed forever. It's not the first time that I experienced a major life change, and just like the other times, I had no idea what I was about to go through. A lot of no's would have saved me. I was just trying to save myself and do what was best for me. I was in the hospital from November 27th until December 31st, 2020. I went to the Emergency Room because I was vomiting non-stop. This was dangerous for me being a transplant patient, and when I arrived, I was dehydrated.
I was transferred to what was supposed to be a more equipped hospital. The things that happened to me at that hospital are the reason for every photo that was in my video snippet. What made it worse about being in this hospital is that I had never been there before, it was a long way away from my home, and my family couldn't be with me for 2 weeks because of COVID-19 hospital policy. I was going through pain, sickness, and confusion exhausted without the people who care for me. I could hardly use my right hand because both of my arms were swollen from infections. I was only there to get a treatment called plasmapheresis.
I literally have been fighting for my life all year of 2021. I have been hospitalized every month since March all stemming from the hospital stay that began on November 27th. On Christmas I was told that I had 4 days to live, was given a choice to resuscitate or not, and I was recommended to go to hospice or for hospice to come to me. I strongly declined hospice. They kept asking, I kept declining. I wasn't dying and one thing I know for sure in dealing with illness is that our bodies are always moving towards a state of healing, doing everything to save us. My mind was damaged from the trauma that I had experienced, yet my faith was unbelievably strong.
This was the third hospital that I was transferred to, they were trying to clean me up from all the infections that I accumulated at the other hospital. I was there for 3 weeks. I literally walked out of that hospital against doctor's orders because I feared for my life. The kidney doctor tried to force me to state and sign paperwork saying that I was going to die if I didn’t take the treatments that he advised. I told him, “Dr…. You know I am too spiritual of a person to ever say those words. I won’t speak those words over my life, and I am definitely not signing any paperwork that says that.
The doctor wouldn't believe that my arms and chest were infected, he denied me the necessary medications. I had to demand that all of the ports that they put in me be removed. They wouldn't give me a wheelchair, I walked out on my own 2 feet after not walking for a month. I could barely breathe, I was full of fluid, I couldn't fit my shoes, but I was getting out of that hospital and getting myself to safety.
It is amazing how magnificent God made us, the ancestor fighting within us, and the resilience to survive against seemingly impossible odds.
I was septic, had an unexplainable gigantic hematoma on the right side of my body that happened while I was under for a procedure. It was impossible to lie on my right side. My blood levels were dropping dangerously low every day because I was bleeding internally.
I had infected lines in my arm and chest bringing about blood clots and infected fluid in my body. I was burned during a procedure leaving a hole in between my neck and chest. I had fluid in my lungs, around my heart, and in my heart pocket. I had pneumonia. When I asked doctors what happened to me, the response I got was silence.
I began fasting while I was in the hospital. I fasted drinking only water for 3 days, followed by drinking only herbal teas for 5 days. Once I was home, I ate blueberries, grapes, and apples with herbal teas and tinctures for 60 days. I lost 30 pounds in fluid from fasting in less than 2 weeks. I also lost a great deal of weight that wasn't fluid leaving me underweight. I spoke to the herbalist that was helping me about the concern for my weight, and he said that I would gain all of the weight back once I was better.
Once I was home all of my kidney numbers improved, and doctors were baffled. When I went to the hospital, I weighed 113, when I left, I was 153 pounds in fluid. When a catheter was placed in my chest, I had an adverse reaction where fluid began to accumulate in my stomach and chest. Doctors didn't understand what was happening. Then the catheter became infected, and before it was removed, my body was grossly blown up with fluid.
I managed to get all of the fluid off of me at home through fruit fasting and dry fasting. However, a month later, my kidney numbers began to rise and doctors were puzzled about how they got out of whack so fast. My blood pressure was high and not responding to medications. It was discovered that I had a spine infection, osteomyelitis stemming from the infected catheter that was placed in my leg before. I couldn’t walk for a month, I was in excruciating pain, and I was treated horribly by some of the nurses at the hospital. The pain of it was surreal.
Much of what happened to me in the hospital was because I was not believed.
In June, the same reaction happened to me from another catheter that was placed in my chest. Doctors believed that I only had swelling because the previous catheter was infected. This was not true, and I had to demand that it be removed so that I could start losing the fluid that accumulated for the 3 days that I had it. Again, here I was with 30 plus pounds of fluid added onto my body.
In August I almost lost my life.
I had a fluid overload in and around my lungs that had to be syphoned out through my back. It was from the fluid overload in June that was caught up in my lungs and in my heart pocket. I couldn’t talk, I couldn't explain to the Emergency staff what was happening to me, because I literally couldn’t breathe. In all honesty, I thought it was a wrap for me.
A month ago, I had to have emergency surgery on my arm. A nurse unknowingly hit the blood clot in my arm that I had since December while trying to put in an IV, causing it to grow larger with fluid surrounding it, swelling my arm and the pain, sheesh, was surreal. My arm formed a large bubble at the IV site so they removed it.
At the time of it happening, I didn't know that something was wrong, I just knew that my arm was in terrible pain. I remember crying all the way home from the hospital. I had to take medication and elevate my arm to sleep. I couldn't believe the pain that I was feeling, and at the time no one knew that a blood clot had been hit.
As the days went by, my arm wasn't improving, just swelling more as I tried the ice pack that the nurse gave me before I left the hospital. I couldn't straighten it. One day I tried changing my clothes, having to bend and straighten my arm, and my bicep began to move around shifting up and down, it was extremely painful. I tried holding my muscle in place, and it left my finger prints in my arm. I couldn't believe what I was seeing. I knew that I needed to go to the Emergency room immediately.
I was in excruciating pain for over 20 hours before I was taken to surgery. My arm is still healing, my bicep still swells, and it becomes painful if I use my arm a lot. I have been rehabbing my arm back to health.
There is so much more that happened between all of this, and this itself is a lot. I have fought my battles head on. I've been told that I was going to die a hundred times. I was fed up with doctors coming into my room saying how I was going to die so I started telling them, "You know you're going to die too?" They never had an answer. Yea that's what I thought.
There was a nurse who came by my room every day that she was at work, she would say to me, "Allah has the final say."
No one can scare me with death. I have faced death's door and walked right through it. I can remember when my heart wasn't beating right, I couldn't take a full breath, when I couldn't sleep, and was awake for days at a time. I can remember looking in the mirror and not recognizing my face. I want to forget all the silly and hurtful things that people said to me.
I want to walk away from the people who said hurtful things to me. It disconnected me from people in a way that I have never felt before. The thoughtless things that people complained about to me became unbearable. I am not as easily accessible now, and I know that some people care, it's just the people that pretend to care that you have to watch out for. This is not a game, this is my life, this is your life, don't let anyone half-hang onto you, half-support you when it's convenient for them, and half-be in your life. One thing’s for sure, if they're not helping the situation, they are most likely hurting it.
A few people hurt me during this time, but the pain wasn't like any experience that I had before. I knew there was a purpose for me to be faced with this, to be faced with hard-hearted people, fake people, and I needed to know the truth. When you go through troubles like this, the last thing you need around you is someone "who isn't who they say they are." You are better off knowing, it is a blessing to know.
No one knows how you feel, yet they can empathize with what you feel. You need compassion and you need it more so from yourself for yourself. I am thankful for the people that helped me, that prayed for me, that came to see me in the hospital, and the people that just listened to me. Troubled times will definitely separate the real people from the fake, they can't hide, the truth comes out.
So, when I say I am grateful to be alive, I am not just saying it, this gratitude comes from deep within my soul. I am real about the people I love. I am demanding peace and tranquility, no drama whatsoever in my life.
You learn the true meaning of self-love. You get to see God in action. You know, you just know, even when it hurts to know, you know that it’s better for you to know.
What I have been through has changed me forever. I don't see with the same eyes or hear with the same ears. I look to enjoy my life in everything that I do. I take it easy on myself and on other people. The things that used to be a big deal to me aren't a deal at all. I see people who haven't come to understand what's important and what's not important in this life. I don't play about me anymore. I am prepared to walk away at any time. I don't leave in anger; I leave because I love me, even if you don't love me, that's fine, I value me.
I mind my words and my business.
So, when you hear me talking about God, The Most High, and my faith, know that it’s real. I couldn’t have made it to this point without faith and without God.
Infinite love to you, I thank you if you read my story. I know it can be overwhelming and I don't take you for granted.
It has taken everything out of me to share my personal story with you. It is in my heart to help someone, to tell somebody not to give up, to hold strong to your will to live. Plus, how could I not share with you how I have been protected and spared by The Most High Everlasting God.
Whatever you do, don’t let fear consume you, and when you do get scared, do it anyway. I did it when I felt unsure and sometimes, I would feel a rush of fear, I had to learn to decipher the difference between my intuition and what was fear. There was a strong force inside of me that wouldn’t let me give up and give in. It’s like this powerful force was answering for me. Follow your inner voice, speak life. Your inner voice was given to you by the Divine, so it is the truth.
I cried out to God and God heard me.
Thank you for listening to me. I am grateful for you.
If you ever have any questions or would like to book a zoom meditation with me, send me a message.
Raquel Givens Jones
Dancer, Author, Blogger, Poet, Writer, Radio, Dog Lover, Yogi,
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