Thursday, April 18, 2013

April 18th, 1998

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April 18, 1998
15 years ago today my life changed. 15 years ago I made a promise, a promise to live.

For those of you who don’t know – I was in a house fire on UTC Campus at the Sigma Chi Fraternity House in Chattanooga, TN. I escaped the fire by jumping out of the top floor only to land on a sidewalk. I broke my back, both feet and burnt over half my body 3rd degree. They said I would never walk again; I had 4 surgeries the first few days – skin graphs that now cover both of my arms and my entire back. Rods were put in my back that later would be covered in staff infection and be removed. Left foot – clean ankle break, right foot crushed and basically wired back together on the inside. I don’t sweat, I can’t cool myself off, I can’t be in the sun, I can’t push myself physically, my foot sometimes just likes to “go out” on me, I wake up with an aching back everyday, I have gained a lot of weight due to not being as active, I have lost a lot of my self esteem, I look in the mirror and see scars from head to toe, and I always wondered why it happened to me?

But you know…I am ALIVE to write this today. I lived, I fought, I stayed strong and pulled through. I walked again. . I kept my good attitude “most” of the 3 months I lived in the hospital with my mom. I left the hospital in crutches even though they told me I would be in a walker. I was and am completely supported by the BEST friends and family a girl could ask for. The most genuine man I know loves me unconditionally and I am fortunate to have been married to him 12 years this July. I have four fur children that bring smiles to my face on a daily basis. We are on an incredible journey to bring our daughter home. I have a business that continues to make my heart happy. I live in a beautiful city surrounded by friends and family.

I wake up thankful everyday that I was given another chance to live. God saved me that day for a reason and I plan to spend my entire LONG life discovering why.
To all the people in my life that day and the 15 years to follow – thank you. I couldn’t have done this without you. All of you are part of my journey. I love each of you and thank God for the difference you have made in my life.

I leave you with this….remember to tell the people you love you LOVE them! We are reminded EVERY DAY that this could be our last day on earth. Thank God you woke up today. Thank God you were given another day to live. Enjoy it. Make the best of it. Don’t dwell on the bad stuff – there is ALWAYS good! Thank God for your blessings every night. Make a promise to live. I have kept my promise and will keep living my life one day at a time!

With my love and appreciation,
Tobi

12 comments:

  1. You, my dear are a miracle and a wonderful person. God has big plans for you! Looking forward to see how your story continues to unfold!

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    1. You are AWESOME Claire - thank you so much!! xoxo

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  2. Tobi, what an incredible story of bravery!! Thank you for sharing this story with us! I am enjoying getting to know you. I know God has an awesome plan for you. I know He will give you the desires of your heart. I can see Him in you daily. You are a beautiful woman inside and out. xoxo

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    1. I am lucky to call you my friend....SO thankful for you! xoxo

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  3. I'm so lucky to have a strong woman like yourself as my friend. It was fate that made us booth neighbors at ICE!! Love you so much

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    1. you've got that right!! SO glad we were neighbors and I know we will be forever friends! LOVE YOU

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  4. ......& I'm certain there are many many grueling details that you've had to rise above and still have to on a daily basis! Thank you for sharing! You're amazing lady & Godnisngonna blow you away with all of HIS plans!! Hugs!!

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    1. Thanks friend - I am excited to see- I already feel so blessed! xoxo

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  5. WOW.
    I did not know any of this.
    I am so grateful to have found your journey, you are amazing.
    SIGH and huge LOVE!

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    1. Thanks so much friend! Glad to have you! xoox

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  6. Wow, but an amazing journey you've been on!!

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  7. You are an incredible person, Tobi! I can't imagine that any of this journey has been "easy"...it's a good thing that you are so strong and full of Faith! Thank you for sharing your story:) I love you and think you are beautiful inside and out!

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