Decker was seven months pregnant with her second child when she contracted strep pneumonia, a bacterial infection that sent her body into septic shock.
Watch a clip from Decker’s appearance on the show below:
When Decker went to the hospital, she remembers doctors telling her some of the most terrifying words a mother can hear: “We have to get the baby out now!” Before being rushed into an emergency C-section, Decker kissed her husband goodbye. It would be the last time she would see him.
Twenty days later Decker awoke from a medically induced coma to find both her legs amputated along with her right hand. She was also blind. Sepsis had raged through her body and left much of her skin blackened from lack of circulation. Because of this, Decker required painful skin grafts on 30 percent of her body.
When she was finally released from the hospital, Decker begged her husband, Scott, to take her back to the hospital because it wasn’t fair to have him and their girls take care of her. But the two came to an agreement: Carol would try impatient rehab for a year and then they could reevaluate what was best for her.
For all that year, Carol gave impatient rehab her all. And after she received her prosthetic legs, she says she began to feel like she could do this.
In 2014, Decker achieved her ultimate goal. Using a sit-ski, Decker was able to go skiing with her family.
“To hear my daughters go by me and say, ‘Hi mommy’ was the best sound ever,” Decker shares.
The doctors on the show all praised Carol for her determination and perseverance.
“We are just in awe of you,” Stork says on the show. “And the way you’ve battled through this is so remarkable. And we really wanted you to share with us and our viewers how you dug deep to find that strength.”
“Well, you know, my biggest strength is family,” Decker says. “Being a mother is my greatest joy.” Decker also shared that her husband and immense support system helped her navigate through the trauma after waking from her coma to find she had become blind and a triple amputee.
“Carol, your strength and your courage, I think you are setting an amazing example for those girls in your family,” Dr. Sonia Batra said on the show.
While Carol admits that she still has difficult days, she’s decided to live in the present instead of the past.
“Every morning I wake up happy because I’m alive and I just embrace that moment every day,” Decker says.
Lead image a screenshot from thedoctorstv.com
Unshattered: Overcoming Tragedy and Choosing a Beautiful Life recounts Carol’s fight for survival against sepsis and its life-shattering complications. From excruciating skin grafts to learning how to function in daily life without lower legs, a left hand, and her sight, Carol takes us on a personal and raw, yet inspiring journey. She travels through the darkness of trauma, anxiety, and depression to arrive, literally, at the peak of a mountain with a heart full of gratitude and love. More than a story of triumph over tragedy, the book offers inspiring life-lessons and insights which can help readers to do more than endure unimaginable pain and darkness in their own lives. This book can give them the perspective and strength to pick up the pieces of their own tragedies and choose a life of healing, purpose, and joy—a beautiful life.