Could life really get better? 

Picture an idyllic Cape Cod town. You might not realize it, but you were just imagining Barnstable Village—where my husband and I live. We’ve got a power boat for sunset fishing or jaunts to the Vineyard, a place up in the New Hampshire mountains for winter getaways, and three grown children living nearby. All in all, there wasn’t much more I could want from life. 

But one scary moment shattered all of it. 

I was dog sitting for a friend, and a game of tug-of-war escalated horrifically. The neighbors called 911 and the paramedics called for an airlift. 

Trauma teams prepped at Rhode Island Hospital, and when we landed I was whisked straight into surgery. Later I was told that the first goal was to save my life. The second was to try to save my badly damaged arm and leg. One team worked on my arm and another on my leg. Eight hours later, blood flow had been re-established and both limbs were saved. 

I was in the hospital for 42 days, and I slowly got feeling back in my arm and leg. Sometimes, too much feeling. 

But getting back home really helped—though in a lot of ways this was where my battle truly began. There were follow up surgeries, meetings with the psychologist and many months of rehab. At first my insurance company would only pay for two to three in-home sessions a week. But that was until one of my nurses from Rhode Island Hospital got on the phone. No one knows exactly what she did, but suffice it to say that I was soon getting in-home treatments seven days a week. 

I have finally got complete use of my hand back. The brace is off my leg, and my son and I brought the room to tears when we danced at his wedding this summer. 

There is still pain—both physical and mental. And I am still working on getting full range of motion back. But as my husband and I walk down to the harbor in the evening, it’s hard not to wonder, could life really get better? 

—Ramona, Barnstable MA