“Hope is being able to see that there is light despite all of the darkness.” – Desmond Tutu
It is the beginning of 2021, and a lot is happening that can make us all feel despondent. Here is a short story (which will hopefully turn into a series of posts) to remind ourselves that hope still exists.
Ms N.B (31) was involved in a motor vehicle accident on 1 November 2020. She was ejected from the car and subsequently broke and dislocated the C5/C6 vertebrae of her spinal column. She was taken to Life Peglerae Rustenburg Hospital, and emergency surgery was done on her spine. On 23 November she was well enough to be transferred to Netcare Rehabilitation Hospital.
What I remember most about Ms N.B was her beautiful smile. Even on that first day – when all she could move was her neck and left arm – she had a big smile on her face. This is not to say that she did not experience difficult days where she cried and experienced a lot of pain. Still, she always pushed through and remained positive. Even when she shaved off all her hair, one could still recognise her by her smile. It was so pleasant to watch her grow and progress with her physiotherapist and occupational therapist. She was always motivated and tried to give her best.
On 15 January 2021, she was ready to go home. By now, Ms N.B could move both her arms, move her left leg, feed herself, take herself to the bathroom and push her wheelchair. She was so excited. When I asked her what advice she had for other patients, she said: “Work hard. And never lose hope”.