When Alanna was bathing her kids and tucking her eight-month-old into bed, her husband Chris was fighting for his life.
Chris, who went surfing at Dudley Beach, had hit his head on a sandbar and he’d been pulled unconscious from the surf.
When two police officers and a paramedic knocked on her door, Alanna was told Chris was in a helicopter on his way to Royal North Shore Hospital in Sydney.
She was told Chris was critical and fighting for life. Alanna had to leave for Sydney right away.
She told Kidspot: “I remembered later packing the strangest things, two T-shirts, one pair of pants and Chris’s thongs.”
“The CT scan showed normal brain activity. That was a huge relief. Doctors said the disc between Chris’s C3 and C4 vertebrae had dislodged and was pressing against his spinal cord.”
Chris was taken into emergency surgery and during chest therapy in ICU, they pulled sand and seaweed out of his lungs.
Chris was left paralyzed after the incident and now can’t move all four limbs and can’t walk.
When Chris discovered he was classified as a quadriplegic when he read his Go Fund Me page, he said: “why does it say I am a quadriplegic? I’m going to be walking in 12 weeks.”
Chris now can’t feed himself, can’t brush his teeth or shower himself.
Alanna feels God was looking over him that day and is grateful he is with them.
She said: “I stay at the hospital. I just don’t want to leave him. We often say each other’s strength gives us strength, to get through this. We have each other, and our boys.”
Chris now wants to go from a motorized wheelchair into a push wheelchair and hopes to return to his job as Hunter Regional Manager with Disability Services Australia.
Alanna said: “For now, Chris is focusing on getting better, so he can come home, and we can all be together again.”
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