Author by: Sehyun Kim
4 years ago I should have died.
4 years ago I could barely get myself out of bed and I was coughing up blood into a plastic bag all night. I called my mom to help me get out of my apartment and take me to the ER.
4 years ago I was fighting pneumonia and the swine flu while my body went to complete and utter crap. My immune system was basically nonexistent because of some autoimmune disease bulls**t that came out of nowhere.
4 years ago I went to the ICU, where a doctor and some nurses stuck a fat needle in my butt and I spent 3 nights asleep in a medically induced coma. Those wonderful doctors and nurses, who I don’t even know the name of, saved my life.
4 years ago I spent a month in the hospital and then finally got to go home. I still wasn’t better–not even close. I was told to be careful not to get sick, or else I’d end up in the hospital again. Worst case scenario–I could easily catch something fatal.
4 years ago, I was paranoid about even going outside, afraid that I might inhale a bit of dust or touch something dirty and get some kind of infection.
4 years ago I had to think of everyone and everything as a bunch of germs and bacteria. Every restaurant, store, chair, door, just another way for me to get sick.
4 years ago, I was taking a butt-ton of medication every single day. It made me feel like crap.
4 years ago I thought anything could put me back in a hospital bed, fighting for my life. I was in a constant state of fear.
That really sucked.
4 years ago, I was really just a kid. A 19-year-old kid.
And I missed being outside. I missed my friends. I missed my sense of freedom.
I was hopeful, sad, thankful, frustrated, confused, and all kinds of other emotions all at the same time.
4 years ago my life changed.
4 years later, things are different.
Today, I’m not afraid to go outside.
Today, I hug my friends. I shake their hands. I eat at restaurants. I go to concerts. I’m not always wearing a surgical mask.
Now, I don’t freak out anytime I hear someone cough near me. I don’t have to take piles of medications anymore.
This year, I got on a freakin’ plane and traveled to another state (New York) and even another country (South Korea).
In February, I got the flu. Thankfully, I got over it without having to go to the hospital.
In June, I graduated college.
This month, I got a job after experiencing 5.5 months of unemployment.
Today, I’m not completely better.
But…things are pretty good right now. Even though it might not last long, I’m thankful. And I’ll keep counting my blessings.
In 4 more years…who knows what’ll happen?