“Regardless of my outer appearance, I will love myself for my flaws and all.” – A

Meet ‘A’, a Queen and TENS survivor who recently shared her inspiring story on her Instagram page. In Her Words:

After months of holding onto this picture, I’ve come to a place where I finally believe I am ready to share my story. as I’m sure you can imagine; nothing about this was easy so please bear with me and try to be understanding as this may be fairly overwhelming for me.

In November of 2019, I visited the er for what I believed was a minor allergic reaction but after a few days under close monitoring, the doctors came with a diagnosis no one expected. my family and I were told I had a one in TWO million underlying condition which had been triggered by an unknown cause called steven johnson’s syndrome or TENS( toxic epidermal necrolysis). The tens caused my body to shed its top layers of skin until they removed 80% of it through a very difficult surgery. Along with my skin, I lost nails, all hair on my head and body and most of my vision.

For 7 long weeks, I fought for my life in the ICU and burn unit. I combatted cardiac arrest, hypothermia, potential infections and of course the healing process in itself. A second procedure was done to ensure that I could breathe by successfully completing a tracheotomy and connecting me to a ventilator. truthfully, the majority of the time I spent unable to communicate in a medically induced coma with my eyes taped shut meaning I don’t remember much at all.

On Christmas day, I was able to speak again. The first thing I did was call my mom and wish her a merry Christmas, i’ll never forget the shock on the other end of the phone. that same day I ate my first solid meal and took my first steps. My will to leave the hospital as soon as I could kicked in and sure enough, I was released home 3 days later… emotionally, the toll all of this took on me was almost unbearable but I can say I am still on the road to a full recovery and it’s beautiful.

‘A’ before diagnosis.

I’m healing both inside and out one day at a time. being honest, it isn’t always easy waking up looking different than I did before, or not being able to complete simple tasks because I can’t see well. I have great days and then there’s others I can barely roll over in bed. I’m learning to be patient though, a value I always lacked but knew I needed. In so many ways I’ve had to trust God and believe in His plan. I know I went through this for a reason, maybe to slow me down, maybe so someone else could learn something.. who truly knows. what I do know is I refuse to turn this new leaf in my life unchanged. I’m taking the time to really learn myself. this way, regardless of my outer appearance, I will love myself for my flaws and all. I will take care of myself and do what’s in my best interest because I deserve it.
Lastly, I want to thank everyone. if you ever prayed, reached out, visited or even thought about me in the past 6 months, I feel your energy and appreciate you. as I tried to answer as many questions as I can, I truly hope you all respect my privacy and continue to give me the space I need to heal even further.

Love Always,

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