Having a sick child can be a real chore for even the most caring parent, but every mother and father knows that they need to take care of their kids when they are ill. Most make their kid soup, give them some ginger ale and prescribe a healthy dose of rest – whether the kids actually rest is a whole different story though!
Martin Pistorius was your typical 12-year-old boy, playing with his friends and getting involved with sports. The South African schoolboy came home one day with a bit of an illness, like so many kids do after being in a germ-filled school.
Except his sickness didn’t go away in a day, two days, three days… It never ended up going away, in fact.
“He never ever got better,” his mom told NBC.
Doctors informed his parents that they believed their son had contracted a neurological disease of some kind. He began to lose control of his muscles, of his body and soon was stuck in a wheelchair.
Martin’s brain function slowly degenerated to the point where doctors considered him brain dead and told his mother that he had essentially lost the conscious part of his brain.
But the doctors were wrong, and Martin was awake for the next 10 years, believed to be braindead but actually in a waking coma. He had no control over his body, his actions and was unable to communicate for over a decade.
Soon, a caretaker realized that she saw a bit of a glimmer in Martin’s eye and figured out that he could communicate somewhat. It took a ton of, “blood, sweat and tears” from Martin and his trainers to get him back to his current state
Martin still can’t speak, except through a typing device set up to speak out what he types into a keyboard. He also struggles with his legs and uses a wheelchair to get around, but other than that he is amazingly functional for someone who couldn’t move, speak or act for 10 years of his life.
“For so many years, I was like a ghost. It was like I wasn’t there. I was invisible,” Martin told NBC. “You get to see things that you probably never would, like what people really think and how they are when no one is watching.”
This revelation led to another startling comment from Martin, as he revealed that at one point he was awake to hear his mother say, “I hope you die.”
“I had no idea that he understood that, and I am very, very sorry that I said it,” she said in a tearful interview.
“While I was very sad and upset by what she said, I understood where that was coming from. My mother often felt that she wasn’t a good mom,” he continued. “One of the hardest things for me was not being able tell her that, ‘No, you are doing great.’ She is a good mother.”
Martin has now found an amazing wife and is free from the terrible conditions he faced while in his coma – and don’t we all love a happy ending?
Can you imagine being in a coma but still able to hear all of your loved ones for 10 years? Share your thoughts on this bizarre situation in the comments.