Paraplegic Christine Kent Was Found And Saved, But Woke Up To A New Life

Doctors closely monitored Christine because she was in extreme pain.

Doctors closely monitored Christine because she was in extreme pain.

Editor’s Note: Christine Kent stared death in the face and chose not to die. Her unbelievable fight for life, recovery and the building of a new life shows two types of courage that we all need: the courage to face death and the courage to live life, regardless of what type of life we may or may not have.  Through her struggles, she shows us all how to be winners. Part 3 of a 5 part series.

When the police arrived, they secured the scene, and I began to ask for someone to give me a pen and paper, so I could write down the name of the man who had shot me and run over me. I wanted to give them Alan’s name, as well as the phone numbers of friends and family to call to tell them what had happened to me. I was afraid to give the police my mother’s phone number, because I knew she would be so upset, if they called her in the middle of the night. After I had given the police Alan’s name and the phone numbers of the people I wanted them to contact, the paramedics arrived. I knew that I was as safe as I could be, so I relaxed. The paramedics gave me oxygen. I remember being loaded into the ambulance, and then I passed out.

Christine Kent was a swimsuit model and loved living an active lifestyle before her injury.

Christine Kent was a swimsuit model and loved living an active lifestyle before her injury.

Before I was shot, I was modeling swimsuitsand fashion and participated in promotions and shows. After being a chiropractic assistant, which was where I had met Alan, I went to work at a doctor’s office and had a very active lifestyle. I was in a relationship, hoping to start a family, and volunteering. I also loved to snow ski and had planned a ski trip before the accident. Even though I lived in Fort Lauderdale,Florida, in the same house I’m living in now, in the winter months I loved going to Lake Tahoe. Also, I had some elderly people I was helping on a weekly basis around their homes. In my off time, I loved to ride my bicycle.

I had a great life and a bright future before my life was changed so dramatically. I was uncertain and scared of what my life would be like, when I woke up in the hospital in excruciating pain 2 days after the shooting. To save my life, the doctors had to open my abdomen and stop the internal bleeding. They removed all my intestines, examined them and put them back in my body. The pain and swelling that I woke up to were excruciating. The dinner I ate before I was shot may have saved my life, because my stomach was full. I also learned I was a paraplegic and never would walk again. But, I already knew that right after I was shot and couldn’t move.

Christine Kent endured a nightmare, but has turned the corner today!

Christine Kent endured a nightmare, but has turned the corner today!

Even though I had worked for a chiropractor, I knew nothing about spinal cord injuries and never knew anyone with one. I wasn’t even aware that people who were paraplegic couldn’t walk, and I sure didn’t know that they didn’t have any function from the waist down. Once I learned what the word meant, I had a very difficult time dealing with the impact of what my changed life might be like. I was very discouraged, but I was also very grateful to be alive. My prayers had been answered, and I hadn’t died. But now I had to learn to live with a different body than what I’d had. I finally decided that the way my body was really didn’t matter, because I was alive, and God had answered my prayer.

I stayed in ICU for 2 weeks, one of the most horrible experiences I could’ve imagined. I was lying on a bed that could move back and forth to prevent blood clots. I was hallucinating due to the medicine I was being given for pain. However, the medicine didn’t seem to help relieve my pain. I had quite a few complications. Another little side injury that the doctors and nurses didn’t find out until I’d been in ICU for a while was that my wrist was broken. I was intubated and couldn’t talk.

They found out my wrist was broken when a nurse tried to take my blood pressure and pulse on that arm. When she put her finger on my wrist, I motioned with my free hand for the nurse to give me pen and paper to write with, and I wrote, “I think my right wrist is broken.” I had to wait until I was well enough to go through surgery again to have my wrist repaired, but the doctors put a cast on my wrist. After my wrist was operated on, then I had to wait until I was stable enough to have major back surgery 2 weeks after my wrist surgery. After the back surgery, I had to wait for the swelling to lessen.

So, from the time I got to the hospital until I was well enough to go to physical therapy, I moved from one set of miseries to a new set of miseries with a multitude of pain with each operation. I lived through 4 months of hell before I finally started rehabilitation.

Next: Christine Kent Learns That Where There’s A Will There’s A Way

About the Author: For the last 12 years, John E. Phillips of Vestavia, Alabama, has been a professional blogger for major companies, corporations and tourism associations throughout the nation. During his 24 years as Outdoor Editor for “The Birmingham Post-Herald” newspaper, he published more than 7,000 newspaper columns and sold more than 100,000 of his photos to newspapers, magazines and internet sites. He also hosted a radio show that was syndicated at 27 radio stations; created, wrote and sold a syndicated newspaper column that ran in 38 newspapers for more than a decade; and wrote and sold more than 30 books. Learn more at

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