When my husband, David, awoke in a cheerful mood on December 28th 2006 we had no idea of the drama that was about to unfold. I left him snoozing whilst I went to have my shower. When I returned to the bedroom I discovered David sitting on the side of the bed in a disorientated state complaining of a terrible pain in his neck. I realised that something was seriously wrong and immediately called for an ambulance and our three adult daughters.

It was ages before the ambulance arrived as the crew had got lost! Our house is situated at the end of a rural lane in North Wales and most people have difficulty locating our home even with a Sat Nav! Eventually the paramedics came to our assistance, and David was taken to our local hospital where our daughters joined us. A scan revealed that he had suffered a brain haemorrhage due to a burst aneurysm. The doctors decided that David needed to have surgery at a hospital with a specialist neurology unit. Although in intense pain David was still able to communicate with us and realised the seriousness of his condition. David told me he loved me and then said,� For heavens sake woman don�t panic!� which was typical of my husband! Not long after that he had a second bleed causing David to lose the power of speech, and paralysing the right side of his body. Hope Hospital in Salford, Manchester agreed to take David and he was transported there by ambulance experiencing yet another bleed en route!

The surgeons managed to clip his aneurysm but had to remove a large blood clot in the process, which they warned us might have done considerable damage to David�s brain. David remained in a coma and on life support, the prognosis was not very favourable. On my birthday, January 23rd, David was sent back to Wrexham as his condition has stabilised enough for him to be transported. He was still in a semi-coma and very poorly. A few days later the doctor called me into the ward office to discuss David�s condition. The scans showed that David had suffered gross brain damage, and if he lived he was likely to be confined to a care home with little quality of life. David, a very intelligent man, would certainly have considered that a fate worse than death. The doctor informed me that as David had a chest infection he felt by far the kindest course of action was not to treat the inevitable pneumonia letting nature take its course! I knew that David would not wish to have his life prolonged if it was to no good purpose, and agreed, albeit with a heavy heart that David should not be given antibiotics

A couple of hours later our eldest daughter, an Anglican Priest, went to visit her father and was astonished to find a miraculous improvement in David�s condition. Far from being in the moribund state he was in that afternoon, David was propped up on his pillows and greeted her with a wave and smile of recognition. He tried to talk and some of the words were recognisable.

From then on David�s progress has been remarkable, surprising the medics, family and friends. David was finally discharged from hospital on May 4th. Fortunately his MENSA level intellect is intact although David has several mountains still to climb as his speech and right arm are quite badly affected. As David is absolutely determined to get 100% fit again we feel he is likely to get most of the way there. David is keen that some good should come from this traumatic and life changing event, and hopes that his recovery against all the odds might be an inspiration to others. We intend writing a book about this experience

Next month David celebrates his 60th birthday, back in the dark days at the beginning of this year we thought it was a birthday that he would never see!

We are very grateful for the love and support of our wonderful family, and the thoughts and prayers of so many people who have sustained us throughout this living nightmare; we both want to a say a BIG THANK YOU to them all.

Rose-Mary Gower

"Look beyond the disability, see the perfection of the soul". RJG