so, well i posted a little about this in the steel cancer thread; here's what i posted there:
i think that, for me at least, the most convincing evidence for god's existence is the stories of people recovering from awful situations and feeling themselves that it was god who restored them. this past weekend, i also experienced a "lifting" feeling from god, you know.
on thursday at 4 in the morning, my parents were called by the hospital saying that my sister had a drug overdose and that she was in very bad condition. she had taken heroin, cocaine, marijuana, adderall, and xanax. she was having heart arrhythmias and not breathing. luckily, her friend (whom she had been with at the time she passed out from her overdose) was able to give her CPR and get her to the ER quickly. but by the time my parents got to the emergency room to see her, she was already declared medically dead. the doctors and nurses expressed their sympathy and went around muttering about what a shame it was, etc...
and then when my sister's friend was standing next to her, petting her hand and talking to her, my sister suddenly opened her eyes wide and "woke up" from being dead. the doctor called it a miracle and he had no idea how it was possible that she was alive. she had been "dead" for 40 minutes. my sister has made a full recovery in the past few days, and may be coming home from the hospital as soon as tomorrow. i had thought my sister was dead, and i was completely depressed. i prayed to god, wondering why this would happen. and then suddenly i felt god lifting me up and i knew everything was alright. it was a weird feeling. that was before i even knew that my sister was alive. so this past week has been an experience for me that i won't forget. and my sister won't either, i'm sure. she felt like it was god who brought her back, even though she hasn't really been a christian or a believer or whatever, not since she was little.
(if you've been keeping up with steel, you know that he had an experience where all his despair just went away after he prayed, and he was confused as to why. i was just posting what a possible explanation from my viewpoint would be, which is that god is working to reach steel through his experiences. so i gave that story to show how god has been working in my life through my sister to make me realize his existence more.)
so yeah, that's the basic story. i don't think i've mentioned it here before, but my sister is a drug addict and she's been using them since she was 14. she's 21 now. however, nobody in my family even knew she did drugs until about 7 months ago, when she got arrested for doing heroin in a mcdonald's bathroom.
see, back in may of 2008, she left our home with 2,000 dollars on a train to Portland, Oregon. she kept us up to date back then on how she was doing. she spent the next few months traveling around the country with people she met along the way. she came back in august, when my dad had a heart attack (he had to get a quadruple bypass) and also the dog we had for 14 years died. my sister decided to stay in michigan, at least for a while. then she got arrested a few months later, and she ended up having to spend the night in jail, go to rehab, spend time on probation, etc... luckily, she ended up getting sentenced with only a misdemeanor for marijuana posession (which she had in her bag along with the heroin and needles and whatnot). i guess the court decided to go easy on her. so she has been on probation now, getting drug tests frequently (she had to get 3 of them on st. patty's day, even though she doesn't even drink. it's because we're irish, those darn racists......). my sister should have seen her arrest coming, though. twice before, she had been caught doing heroin. once was in portland, where she had to call an ambulance when her friend stopped breathing when they were shooting up together. they told her that they wouldn't get her in trouble, but that she really needed to clean up or she'd end up like her friend (who died in the hospital later). and then once when my sister was back here, she had to go to the emergency room for an infection on the inner side of her elbow where she had stuck the needle. and yet nobody in my family knew about any of this until she was finally arrested.
my sister was clean for months. she went to rehab and to NA, narcotic's anonymous. but then at 4am last thursday (well technically friday), she had that overdose. she was really stressed out and worried and she had been hanging out with some old friends (from back in her druggie days) earlier in the week. apparently she got some drugs (heroin, cocaine) from them at that time, just for reassurance for herself i guess. so she ended up in the emergency room. my sister was totally dead when i first heard about all this, too. i didn't worry too much, because (as i said before) i felt that god was telling me not to, and that everything would be okay. and my sister did end up getting better over this past weekend. she could talk and walk, and she doesn't seem to have any brain damage at all (which is the most amazing thing, since she had been deprived of oxygen for a long time).
and then UPDATE from today! this morning when i was getting ready for school, we got a call that my sister had coded, which apparently means that her heart and her lungs had stopped working. luckily she was already in the hospital and a nurse saw her collapse in the hallway (she had gotten up to go to the bathroom because she wasn't feeling well). the people on the phone said that they were working on her as we spoke, using an AED to get her heart going again. they put a ventilator back in her throat to get her breathing (it had been taken out on Saturday because she was doing better). anyways, my mom rushed out the door to get to the hospital. i was panicking and shaking at this point, unsure whether my sister would live or not. my mom told me i should probably stay home from school, but i ended up still going (it was only a half day today anyway). i hate missing school and i knew if i stayed home, i would just be worrying about my sister. my dad drove me to school before he left for the hospital. on the way to school, i was praying. i felt god tell me once again that everything would be okay, and that my sister would live. almost immediately, i felt a strange calm come over me. i could tell my dad was worried too, so i turned to him and said, "dad, i feel like god is saying that Lisz will be fine. don't worry, because his will is going to be done, and he loves Lisz, and our whole family. he'll take care of all of us." and my dad thanked me and he tried to calm down too.
i started worrying again at school, even though i still felt that my sister would end up alright. it's just that i didn't hear anything from my mom for a while. i couldn't stop myself from crying while thinking about my sister and all that we have gone through since she got back from her trip across the country. i asked my gym teacher, whose class i was in at the time, if i could use his phone to call my mom.
(he already knew about my sister. the day after the overdose, i told him about how he indirectly saved my sister's life. her friend had gone to the same high school that i'm at, and she had the same gym teacher. in my school, we're required to learn CPR and get certified for it. so, my gym teacher had taught CPR to my sister's friend, who went on to use it to save my sister's life. another weird coincidence that makes me further feel that all of this is planned by god: the day before the overdose (Thursday) was the day that everyone (well, those that passed the test) in my gym class received their CPR certification. i was talking to my friends about it, and we were all saying stuff like "when am i ever going to use this? i'll probably never even use CPR." strange that it ended up being a skill that saved my sister the very next night.)
so anyways, i called my mom and she said she wasn't at the hospital yet. i borrowed my best friend's phone for the day and i told my mom to call me back on that and leave me voicemail messages keeping me up to date on my sister's condition once my mom found out how she was. so in 3rd hour, my mom called and left a message that my sister was breathing again thanks to the ventilator. (man, i am so thankful for the advancements in medicine and machinery that have been keeping my sister alive.) i felt a kind of "i told you so" feeling inside me, as if i realized that there was no reason to worry anyway because god had already been telling me for days that my sister would be okay.
anyway, my sister is recovering again now. it turns out that the reason she had coded was because of the mucus in her lungs. she has a case of pneumonia, and the junk in her lungs made her stop breathing. she's doing better now, and she's off the ventilator. she is resting a lot and coughing stuff up. she won't be coming home for a while, just because we want to be absolutely sure she is okay. but to any of you here who might be so inclined, feel free to pray for her quick recovery. :]
as for what we'll be doing with her after she gets home, hmm... well, we might have to send her to in-patient rehab, where she'll just live there for a while with other addicts. she'll start seeing a therapist again too. besides that stuff, we're going to work extra hard to give her a stress-free environment for times when she is at home with me and my family. i don't know what this will mean for her probation, but i'm hoping that her previous success with rehab and whatnot will show that she is not like she used to be. see, she's not a normal case of an addict. she's not like those people on shows like Intervention and Celebrity Rehab or whatever... my sister doesn't want to disappoint my family. she cares more about us than about drugs, which is why she has made such an effort to get clean. the problem is just a mental thing. my sister has ADD and she can't deal with stress (those are the reasons why she's never been able to drive or get a job). when she is in a stressful situation, she just does whatever she can to make herself feel better. she didn't mean to overdose, and she didn't want to upset the family either. so i know she will try hard to learn to deal with stress better, and she will not do drugs again. and that's all we can really hope for too.
so yeah, crazy stuff. anyone else had experiences like this? feel free to post about any medical miracles or whatnot that you have heard of or seen. and i'll use this topic to post about my sister's progress too, for those who are curious to know how things turn out. craaaazy stuff.