A gift with love

13 Jan 2022

Christmas Day 2019 will be forever etched in the memories of Adrian and Shanesse because it was the day Adrian came close to losing his life.

The fateful day began as a normal Christmas gathering. Shanesse recalls we were spending Christmas with Adrian’s family in Mildura. “It was a really hot day and we had just finished a big Christmas lunch. Adrian and I were just about to go for a walk when all of sudden he felt an excruciating pain in his head.”

As Adrian’s pain continued to increase, Shanesse, who is a trained nurse, felt the weight of the responsibility to take charge of the situation. Along with the intense pain, Adrian said he felt dizzy, had blurry vision and tingling hands. “In my experience as a nurse, these were all signs of rapid deterioration, happening before my eyes. “As Adrian’s dad called an ambulance, I prepared for the possibility that I may have to resuscitate him,” Shanesse said.

Luckily the ambulance arrived within just a few minutes to take him to the local hospital. A CT scan showed a haemorrhage in Adrian’s brain. The hospital in Mildura was ill-equipped to handle the situation. Adrian was flown to Essendon Airport and rushed to St Vincent’s Hospital Melbourne, a leader in the speciality of Neuroscience.

Adrian was taken into surgery where the team performed life-saving brain surgery. Urgent treatment was required to relieve the pressure of the subarachnoid haemorrhage that had been caused by a brain aneurysm.

Adrian spent the next two weeks recovering at St Vincent’s. Both Adrian and Shanesse were particularly impressed by the exceptional caring and compassionate care Adrian received. “The doctors and nurses were amazing. Nothing was a problem, and they were all so calm, even when it was touch and go,” Shanesse said.

It’s taken about 12 to 18 months, but Adrian has now made a full recovery. Remarkably, he didn’t suffer any loss of speech or motor skills which his doctors said was a miracle.

Exactly one year after the almost catastrophic event, Adrian proposed to Shanesse. “I wanted to replace the bad memories of Christmas with a really good one,” Adrian said.

The devoted couple are getting married on 29 January 2022. They have chosen to give a very special gift to St Vincent’s by making a donation to St Vincent’s Hospital, Melbourne on behalf of their guests.

Shanesse said, “We hope our donation will help with research and improve hospital facilities for other people who will need to access their services in the future”.

“It’s our way of saying thank you to the St Vincent’s team for saving Adrian’s life.”

Fundraise your way! There are so many ways you can support St Vincent’s. To find out more head to https://www.stvfoundation.org.au/fundraise


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