8 Years Ago 21 Heroes Saved My Life!

I had No Idea I would Need 21 Heroes That Day

It was a beautiful, bright sunny day in California…Aug 4, 2009 to be exact.  My husband and I headed to the hospital to have our second (my third) daughter.   We were greeted by family and friends who were just as excited as we were to meet Hope.  It was a planned C-section.  My third one…baby #1 was an unexpected C-cection and baby #2 was a planned C-section due to placenta previa.

No Cause for Concern…Yet!

We’d done this before and knew what to expect.  In and out of the operating room in 20-30 minutes. Recovery. Then back to the room to celebrate the new life God had given us.  That’s what we thought and that is what we expected.

Tragedy Hit Without Warning

About 5 minutes into the routine C-section I knew something was wrong.  It may have been the pain my body felt that I hadn’t experienced in the previous C-sections or maybe my intuition.  And without any further warning the C-section went from normal and routine to urgent and severe as my life laid in the balance.

Fighting for My Life

What I didn’t know until I woke up in the ICU was that I was bleeding to death.  My uterus unexpectedly erupted. The doctors acted quickly and got my daughter out safely.  I was unconscious and I have no memory of what happened next.

4 Hour Surgery and 21 Pints of Blood

For four hours, my family did not know if I would survive.  The head of OB/GYN told my husband to brace himself for the worse…they did not know if I would make it.

As the doctors replenished my demising blood volume it would pour right back out of my body. 

I had to be suspended upside down.  They pumped water into my body to keep my heart going while awaiting the delivery of more blood.  It looked like a bloody movie scene from outside of the operating room where my husband and 13-year-old daughter sat. Removing my uterus was the only possible hope I had of surviving and with my husband’s permission that is what they did.

Waking Up in the ICU

The next day I woke up in the ICU…intubated with triple vision. I was almost twice the size I was when I came in the day before.  Due to the water the doctors had to pump into my body, I swelled up like a balloon to the point that even my eyeballs were swollen.  It was 8 days before I got to go home and 4-5 months of recovery.

Reflecting on the Heroes Who Saved My Life

It took an army to save me.  I am so grateful for the doctors and nurses that day.  But my heart was especially touched by 21 heroes…strangers who were not present during my life-saving surgery.  I have no idea what they look like, if they were male or female, what their jobs were, or if they were parents, grandparents, college students or newlyweds.

What I Do Know is These 21 Strangers are Selfless, Kind, Good-Hearted People!

People who took time out of their busy schedules to go to a blood bank or blood drive. And to subject themselves to answering personal questions about their body and lifestyle.  They were willing to be poked by a needle and allow someone to take their blood.  Then to sit and recover for 10-15 minutes before they could leave.  Some may have gotten sick or felt weak after donating.  But they were willing to endure to save a life of someone they did not know.  

Become a Hero Today!!

Do you want to add the word Hero to your name?  Well, you can!  Simply make an appointment to donate blood or look for a local blood drive.  If you are 16 years old or older, at least 110 pounds and in good health…you are a match to give 1 pint of blood.

Be a Hero and Help the Dangerously Low Blood Supply

Blood bank supply levels are at an all-time low according to BloodSource’s recent article.  It is necessary to keep a four-day supply of all blood types on the shelves at all times.  It is critical to saving lives.  If not for the 21 heroes whose donation saved my life…my daughter would have been celebrating her 8th birthday motherless.  I am incredibly thankful for my 21 heroes!  

Chicken-IN today and donate blood!  Become a hero today!

For more information about blood donation visit BloodSource and American Red Cross.

Sincerely with Hugs,


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  1. Beth Robinson | 3rd Aug 17

    My name is Beth, and i am JJ’s Mother-in-law. i was there that day, we were all scared because for about 3 hours we did not know what was going on. We watched her walk into the delivery room and did not know anything was wrong. We prayed and prayed and Praise God he saved not only my granddaughter’s life but my wonderful daughter-in-law. i think of her as my own daughter, because i never had a girl and JJ is the kindest, most loving person i have ever known. We all took care of Hope and held her and loved her so she would not have to leave her alone in the nursery, that was the easy part. My son was at the delivery room door waiting to see if he would ever see his beautiful wife again. That was i believe the hardest thing he has ever had to go through. i went to join him there and we prayed together and cried together. Our wonderful God answered our prayers, and i praise him every day for that.

    • JJ | 3rd Aug 17

      You are bringing tears to my eyes. Thank you Beth. Love you too.

  2. Katie | 3rd Aug 17

    Your story brings tears to my eyes. God definitely had a plan in all of it. I love the tribute to blood donors – how encouraging to read the impact they had on your life!

    • JJ | 4th Aug 17

      Thank you. Blood donors impact so many and they never know who…they are the unknown heroes :).

  3. Andee | 4th Aug 17

    I love you so much! Literally this makes me cry… it’s sad I wasn’t there … and had no idea. I’m your sister and should have been there for you but we live 2 completely different lives … and I just hate that😩 But you are so courageous and strong .. I envy you… always have… always will.

    • JJ | 5th Aug 17

      Sister I love you and your an amazingly strong woman. Never doubt that! We both know how hard our childhood was and that affected our adult lives differently. I love you always! Your so precious to me:).

  4. Carrie Myers | 6th Aug 17

    Beautiful story and I have given blood and will do it again soon. God Bless.

    • JJ | 9th Aug 17

      Thank you so much for your blood donation. You are a hero!!

  5. Trinity | 8th Aug 17

    Such a powerful story. God obviously had and has great plans for your life and little Hope’s life!

    • JJ | 9th Aug 17

      Thank you! I agree…God was there holding my life while the doctors did a great job:).

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