At a time when many families gather around the table to celebrate, Jake, 27, was driving his truck when an accident ejected him from his vehicle on Thanksgiving Day. He suffered multiple injuries including more than 20 broken bones, crushed ribs, the loss of his left arm and acute respiratory distress syndrome. His organs began to fail, and he was put into an induced coma on life support for 11 days.
His mother, Margie, and the rest of Jake’s family were not sure what state Jake would be in when he awoke from the trauma he had experienced.
“We didn’t know if he’d still be there [mentally] when he woke up,” Margie said. “But, he was. We were just so happy he was alive,” she said.
When his condition stabilized, Jake was transferred to a nursing home, where his mental and physical state began to rapidly decline.
“He was depressed and wasn’t moving or getting dressed,” she said. “He was sliding backward in his recovery. They eventually stopped therapy because he wasn’t improving. It was so stressful and unbearable. He was despondent and angry. He felt like his life was over and I felt like my life was over watching my son slip away.”
During Jake’s nursing home stay, Margie and his grandfather took shifts staying with him, taking over his care duties and keeping him company, trying to lift his spirits.
“He was an adult and I had to do things that no adult wants his mother to have to do for him,” she said. “It hurt his dignity.”
Margie begged the social worker to reassess Jake for therapy without much luck. She knew she had to do something and that’s when she found HealthSouth Harmarville Rehabilitation Hospital.
“I had no idea if it would work or if insurance would cover it, but I had to try,” she said. “We got here and so many changes have taken place. It felt like God opened a door that was shut for so long.”
Within a day of being admitted to HealthSouth Harmarville, Jake was dressed, in his powered chair and smiling, something Margie had not seen in a long time.
“He gets showers now,” Margie commented. “He goes outside. He’s hopeful and doesn’t feel like his life is over.”
A weight has been lifted from Margie’s shoulders, as she feels her son is finally getting the care and therapy he needs.
“He’s joking with the nurses and aids,” Margie said. “The people here have such good energy and he’s responding to it. It’s a miracle. It has been an incredible experience and I want to shout it out to everyone I meet because I know there are other moms and people going through this.”