My name is Ruth Mair, I am 26 years old and I’ve started ‘Souls with a Story’ following a mystery illness that attacked my autonomic nervous system leaving me terribly ill for 20 months; an illness which I am now in the process of making a full recovery. From a fit and active person, I ended up close to death after a perforation of my small bowel (causing my body to go into septic shock). Following this, I spent weeks in intensive care, on a ventilator with blood and plasma transfusions.
I could not feed myself, bathe myself or dress myself for more than a year. I could not walk, or sit up in bed without fainting. I had lost 5 stone in 3 months (along with the ability to eat naturally) and had to be fed through a nasogastric tube for 8 months. I had lost the ability to urinate naturally, meaning I had to self-catheterise and my bowel had stopped working resulting in having an ileostomy for almost a year, my body felt dead.
I have started this blog for two reasons. Firstly, I find sharing my story with others to be strangely cathartic. During my extended period in hospital, I met individuals who were suffering and were an inspiration to me as I dealt with my challenge. Talking to them about similar experiences really helped and made me realise that I wasn’t alone. I now consider these individuals to be life-long friends. Secondly, therefore I hope to share their stories, by bringing a similar benefit to them personally. It is sometimes, only by talking and sharing that we realise we are not alone.
No matter what we go through in life, it is the people around us that carry us through. Unity is strength and we raise by lifting others. To those who helped me get through this experience; family, friends, fellow patients, doctors, nurses and healthcare workers, from the bottom of my heart, thank you. Diolch. You have given me a second chance in life and I will always be grateful. Life is so very precious, lets make the most of every- single- day.