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It's a miracle! After years of being in a unconscious state, people who were in long term comas finally came out of it.

Comas can be caused by a number of things, like traumatic head injury from an accident, a stroke, or a brain tumor. Comas can even come on through infection or alcohol poisoning.

It may seem that there isn't a lot happening when someone is in this state of involuntary "deep sleep" but there's actually a lot going on under the surface.

The real question though, after all that time, what happens when someone has finally woken up and has to go back into the world? What are they asked to face? How will they become apart of society after all that time?

We went to Ask Reddit to find out first hand accounts of people coming out of their coma.


Redditor Real_Joe_Mom wanted to know:

"Redditors who have been in coma for a long time (>1 yr) what was it like to "wake up" again? And how did you adjust to literally a long fast forward?"

Let's get into it.

​Financial woes.

"I had no idea where I was. I had no idea what happened. Months later I was still learning about who did (or didn't) visit, pray, call, ask. Finances were a total mess (trust me, companies DO NOT CARE). Massive debt and financial penalties. And took over 18 months to get a job after painful physical rehabilitation and explaining over and over and over that I was in a coma, not just not working. Then COVID."

- North-Technician

"Ever think 'Sh*t, I hope this is still the coma?'"

- Boss_Boggs

"I got hit on the freeway and crashed into the median and knocked unconscious when I woke in the morning after having a weird seizure sleep paralysis it took me 30 min to convince myself I was actually alive."

- adognameddave

"I feel ya. It's been a financial nightmare for me too, I don't think I'll ever recover from this. There is no forgiveness for us. Recently, I totally lost it on a debt collector, I was screaming through the phone at him 'Do you f*cking think I planned this! What part of zero dollars do you not understand!'"

"Fortunately I was given Social Security Disability so the working thing has a little relief but it is a penance of what I used to earn. Unfortunately because I got behind on child support (due to coma) the State is taking a major chunk out of my Disability income to make up the arrears, I have to come up with 3K I don't have to go to court and 'maybe' get that reduced. Both my boys are Marines now but the State still taking money for child support arrears putting me further in a financial hole."

"Some days I think about just robbing banks to get out of this. If I don't get caught great, if I do I can go live with the Feds (prison) Either way it is a win/win situation."

- WhyZeeGuy

"I feel like the state should automatically give you disability or at LEAST assign you a case worker to suspend your bills and store your stuff while you're in a coma. Like, there should be a system where the hospital logs you as a coma patient and then social services step in. Wtf."

- ProstHund

"I'm not American, but from everything I've heard about American healthcare, it sounds dystopian."

- Anonymous2401

"Don't worry in comas or similar situations, it's not just the healthcare that screws you!"

- bocaj78

"Dude oh my god when I read about that vegetative person in a facility who gave birth and no one even knew she was pregnant…that was f*cked up"

- ProstHund

Hollywood was wrong.

"Hollywood's depiction of waking from a coma is shockingly wrong. I was really stunned when my friend was in one for about a month and had to relearn virtually every basic function."

- alexrt87

"Yeah, my friend was in a coma for a couple of weeks and it took days for her to wake up. Then she had to relearn movement, speech, walking, everything. Crazy."

- CDM2017

"Just before my grandpa died, he stopped eating and drinking and kind of went in and out of comatose states for a few days, and the doctor was explaining to us that doctors don't really like the terms 'coma' and 'wake up' because it implies a binary of coma and consciousness, when in reality it's a spectrum with lots of shades of grey."

- whompmywillow

"My dad was in a coma for 3 months due to complications after surgery for pancreatic cancer. It was just like that. Sometimes he was completely out, sometimes he'd look at me but it wasn't clear if he actually 'saw' me. At one point he gave thumbs up and smiled when my 2 year old daughter visited him and said hello, and seemed to hear what we were saying to him. Clearly he was in varying degrees of consciousness. He doesn't remember much of that period though."

- manofredgables

"I was in a coma for a few days after falling from a roof when I was 10. I don't remember falling or anything until I woke up with my mom beside me."

"Evidently, I was awake during this time to have answered detailed questions about chess moves. But I can't remember any of it."

"Reading all these stories, I feel fortunate as I've had no long lasting effects. However, I did some psychoanalysis a few years ago and under regression I relived the fall. I had never really thought much about it but I mentioned it happening to the shrink."

- robbie-3x

Severe memory loss.

"Does it count if you can't remember a single thing for 6-8 weeks? I was technically 'out,' but my wife says she had a conversation with me every day."

"I don't remember anything but was medically sedated for almost 2 months after getting hit by a car [while] cycling."

"Anyway, I couldn't walk or use any extremities upon coming to. Extreme muscle atrophy required almost 2 yrs of PT to regain full independence. Not fun at all."

- dal1999

"My dad also lost several weeks of memories after being run over by a car whilst he was out cycling. Weird how similar your stories are. He spent 2 months in hospital too but couldn't remember anything that had happened for weeks beforehand. The accident happened in January but when he was taken out of his induced coma he still thought it was the year before and couldn't remember Christmas or anything."

- fernshanks

Lost in the passage of time.

"I was out for just over a month, it was surreal, like a dream I couldn't quite wake up from. When I woke up, my arms and legs didn't work and my vision and thoughts were really fuzzy. I thought I was out for a few days and was unpleasantly surprised to know it has been over a month."

- phageblood

"What were the dreams like?"

- MHoolt

"Oddly enough, walking around the streets of my home town. There was music that seemed to come from the sky and someone was talking to me, but they sounded really far away. Turns out my best friend had sat next toy hospital bed, talking toe and playing a lot of our favorite music!"

- phageblood

Lost love.

"I was out for 40 days after a motorcycle accident, but I don't remember much for about 6 weeks after that as well. I was sedated with ketamine and a mix of opiates and started to wean off of them while still on a ventilator and ECMO. I was extremely confused and seeing double so I was terrified. Communicating was very hard because of the confusion and that I couldn't talk or write. The thing I remember most vividly is the insane hallucinations I had as a result of the ketamine. I was hallucinating something that was making me freak out and try to rip the tubes out of me, including my ventilator, chest tubes, and arterial line so they had no choice but to tie my limbs down and put boxing gloves on my hands. I had no idea I was doing any of that, but I had moments where I was significantly more aware of what was going on, which were so frustrating because I was completely tied down and again, couldn't communicate. The doctors and nurses kept trying to explain to me what I was doing and that I needed to stop, but I did not understand. I felt like I was being tortured and I couldn't understand why."

"At the time of my accident, I was in an online relationship that had become very rocky. I had booked a flight to meet the girl and my accident happened the day before my flight. This was only somewhat of a coincidence, as I was riding my motorcycle extremely recklessly due to my emotions and frustration in the relationship, and with my life for other reasons. My family knew about my relationship and was able to tell her, but it wasn't until about 3 months after the day of the accident that I talked to her for the first time by sending her a video."

"One of my respiratory therapists put a device on my tracheostomy so I was able to talk. This was an extremely emotional moment and my mom was the first person to hear my voice. I used the device to talk on the phone with the girl, but it was difficult because the ventilator was loud and the device did not sound like my normal voice. My relationship with her was not the same and not recoverable. In hindsight, this was for the better, but in the moment despite all the terrible things I was experiencing, the feeling of having lost the connection with this girl who was my first love was awful. By this time I was becoming completely aware of what I did and what happened, and extremely conscious of what I had put my mom through as she had been by my side every day in the hospital not knowing if I would survive, or if I had sustained significant brain damage."

"After 5 months in the hospital I was transferred to a rehabilitation facility, and two weeks later (December 2019), discharged home with a wheelchair and walker. I was gaining the ability to walk short distances on my own and even decided to start college again. Then covid hit, and I also experienced some unfortunate medical complications that kept me in and out of the hospital for most of 2020."

"This is all very recent, but every aspect of my life has changed post-accident. My finances are in ruin. My physical health and pain is terrible but given the fact that I have all my limbs and can still walk, I feel like I can't complain. I value time completely differently because of my continuing medical complications. I don't think I will live very long. It's a lot harder for me to get angry or upset about anything because it all feels insignificant compared to being tied down, unable to communicate, and in pain."

- office365makesmekms

Everything changed.

"Best friend of an old colleague of mine who I met a few times at drinks etc..."

"She was in a car accident when she was about 20, spent a few months in a coma."

"Upon waking up apparently her whole personality changed, especially her goals and stuff. Before the accident she wanted me to a teacher and was in uni, but after the accident she couldn't think of anything worse and wanted to become a hairdresser."

"She couldn't remember a lot of her teenage years and she said some things like her favourite food and TV shows had changed (from what people told her she liked before hand) and taste in music."

"I was absolutely flabbergasted by what she was telling me."

- johnotopia

Being trapped in your own mind for so long, unaware of what's really happening in the world and how much time has passed sounds like a nightmare in itself. But upon waking is when the real nightmare can start.

Especially if you live in America.

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