It’s been a long day, a lot of work, a few days of depression.
But after three days of being home and in the hospital, Kristi Smith has been reunited with her family.
Smith, a former New York City firefighter, was rushed to the hospital Friday after a severe brain hemorrhage.
Doctors found she had an undiagnosed heart condition.
She was given a breathing tube and told to stay in the ICU for a week or two.
She’s now back home with her fiance, Mike Kowalski.
“I’m just glad I can be home,” she said.
“Thank you for everything.”
The day before, Smith had planned to go to work as soon as she could.
But when she got the news that she’d had a heart attack, Smith thought she was in a dream.
She called her mother and asked if she could stay with her at her house.
“She was in shock,” Kowelski said.
It wasn’t until a few hours later that Smith told her mother that she had a brain hemorrhaging.
She said she was scared for her life.
“When you have that many doctors and nurses trying to save you, it’s hard to know what’s going on,” she told ABC News.
Smith was born with a rare genetic disorder called spastic partial cerebral palsy.
It causes the brain to lose its ability to process sound, which affects communication and movement.
It’s not clear what causes the condition, but it is thought to be inherited.
Kowelksi said Smith is the first person he’s ever met with the condition.
“We were in the room and she just looked at me and said, ‘Mommy, you’re going to die,'” Kowieski said of his wife.
“But she’s not going to.”
Smith was diagnosed with the disorder in 2012 and started working at the firehouse three years later.
She says she is proud of what she’s accomplished, but is also concerned about the future.
“This is my last year with my family and I can’t take it anymore,” she wrote in a post on Facebook.
“The firehouse was the only thing that I knew that was going to keep me alive and to make me happy.”
Smith told ABC affiliate WABC that she’s still not sure what the future holds.
“It’s been difficult but it has been worth it,” she added.
She also told WABC the only way she’s going to be able to make a living as a firefighter is if her parents have more children.
“My mom and dad are working for free.
It makes it tough for me to have them as my parents,” she explained.
“They have so much love for me and love me.”
Kowelsski said he’s glad Smith’s family is with her, but he also feels bad for the people she’s left behind.
“Hopefully, when she comes back home, she can make the same progress that I did,” he said.