After over nine months in the hospital and rehab, as well as two months in a coma, a man from Quebec has finally come home.
Peter Simard, 59, recalls being unable to take a breath. He even called his mother to inform her that he was about to die.
“I heard him say ‘Mom, I think I’m dying’,” his wife Céline Lafrenière recalled. “It was not a joke, you could see he was struggling to breathe.”
Céline dialled 911, and Peter was taken to Hull Hospital’s COVID-19 ward. He was transferred to the COVID-19 intensive care unit a few days later, where he was the only patient.
Peter was placed in a medically induced coma and placed on a ventilator a week later.
On October 3, his wife and children were summoned to a conference with doctors, who informed them that the medical team had run out of alternatives.
“The doctor said, ‘Peter is going to die. There’s nothing we can do. He’s going to die’,” Céline recalled.
The family, on the other hand, was not ready to let him go.
“They had decided that it was over, and I was not ready for that,” Céline said. “I said, ‘You read about miracles every day, why can’t he be one?'”
They began providing a steroid shortly after the meeting, which is generally used to suppress the immune system and reduce inflammation in illnesses like asthma.
“That bought him time. It saved his life,” Céline said.
For the first time, Peter opened his eyes. He was awake, but he couldn’t move or communicate. He began to speak six or seven weeks after waking up from his coma.
His amazing recovery continued at a rehabilitation clinic, where his gung-ho attitude earned him the moniker “The Cowboy.”
“I exceeded every expectation that they set for me because I wanted to come home,” Peter said.
He gives thanks to his religion and his family, and he has no bad feelings against the physicians who predicted his death.
“The message is not … that the doctors were wrong. The doctors didn’t know,” he said. “My kids weren’t ready to let me go, and I wasn’t ready to go.”
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