What makes you a Beautiful Disaster:  I've risen from childhood molestation, to being gang raped, being beaten by two different men in relationships, disfigured by a botched kidney surgery, becoming a heart surgery warrior, to surviving ARDS (Acute Respiratory Distress Syndrome) and can live to tell you about it all! 

Why do you Identify with the Beautiful Disaster Brand? *: Because I am a survivor not a victim.

I've risen from childhood molestation, to being gang raped, being beaten by two different men in relationships, disfigured by a botched kidney surgery, becoming a heart surgery warrior, to surviving ARDS and can live to tell about it all. Through it all I've raised 3 beautiful kids, who have blessed me with 9 grandkids.

I've been through a lot my entire life as I stated in the beginning. As I look back now, nothing compares to surviving ARDS, acute respiratory distress syndrome. My God what a ride this has been. In July 2023, my lungs were bleeding and I was coughing up a lot of blood.  I had to be intubated for 14 days. In that 14 days, I came so close to dying a few times. I'm told by my family that they would ask me if I was fighting, I always nodded my head. You see, I live my life seeing the positive, not the negative. My family told all the medical staff that when they came into my room, to be upbeat and positive. Because that's what I know, so the staff did just that, even when I was slipping away. They all stayed positive for me. My husband, a great man, who treats me like a queen, would come and talk in my ear very softly and I reacted to his calm voice and my vitals would become normal again.

So, finally after 14 days of being intubated, they removed the tube. I remember my husband and daughter telling me I was being moved out of ICU. I'm like what? Where am I and what the heck is going on? I couldn't move anything but my neck. All of my muscles were basically gone. I couldn't walk, feed myself, or turn over in bed. Nothing. I had to have everything done for me. And I'm talking everything. Just like a baby. Talk about getting humbled very fast!

After 2 weeks of physical therapy, I started feeding myself. That was fun. Very messy. But, I was doing it. I was so proud. A week later, I was moved from the hospital to a rehabilitation center. There I put in a lot of hard to work to get my muscles strengthened up so I could stand and then walk. After 4 weeks, I was discharged to go home. But, I could only walk a few steps. I was in a wheelchair. But, I was home.

I had a nurse, PT, and OT coming to my home twice a week. This went on for 3 months. When they left for good, I continued my therapy on my own.

Which brings me to today. 8 months later. I have a long road of recovery still ahead of me. I become short of breath easily. But, I'm walking about a half a block daily. And I'm making dinner and doing a few household chores. I tire easily still. I'm told recovery takes about 2 full years.

Now this next part I'm going to tell you is wild!! I still don't understand what is happening, but I'm just going with it. I've become an Artist! I started painting on rocks while I was in the rehabilitation center. My hands were so shaky but I kept with it. My hands barely shake at all now and I'm actually painting scenery on canvas, wood, metal, and even on big rocks. I can't stop! I paint every day. And I've even sold a few pieces. I'm an Artist now! Whatever happened to my brain while I was intubated has opened up a brand new gift for me.

I live my life by this "In every negative situation you can find a positive".


What happened for you to turn it around? : My Mom taught me to live in a positive way, not a negative way. So, I find positives out of negatives. I refuse to be a victim. I choose to be a survivor.

Name 3 things you’ve done to move closer to happiness. * :

I found a loving, kind, and gentle man to partner up with.
I cherish the blessings I've been given and I don't take any of it for granted.
I don't waste my energy on "the why me" crap. It is what it is and I just keep on keeping on.

What is your favorite Beautiful Disaster collection, past or present and why? : I love my yoga pants. I have 2 pairs but I don't know from what collection. But, my favorite is my camo hoodie that has golden letters of beautiful disaster.

I am a Beautiful Disaster.


Gail E. VanPolen said:

I’ve found I cannot always read the letters from my tribe mates. I take them in so much I feel like I’ve been there. I took a chance with Lori’s story. Thank you honey for your bravery and for sharing your life. Missgail

Regina Shoell said:

We’re can I see your paintings and maybe buy.

Janet said:

Look at you Warrior! I know Lori. She is a true survivor. An inspiration to all who knows her. The most positive person, I have ever met. She is resilient in her journey to achieve the best life she can. It isn’t always pretty to watch either. But to watch her fight to live her best life, is hard yet beautiful. She just does it. And now she paints? I’ve seen her paintings and I’m blown away! She didn’t really paint before. They truly are amazing…

Brandy Escalanti said:

I am this miraculous woman’s daughter. I can attest to my mother’s resilient spirit. My words can never be enough to explain my love and admiration for her. We just celebrated Mother’s Day and I couldn’t help but be filled continuously by gratitude for her endurance and strength to overcome her hardships. Not only has she shown a supreme example of endurance, resiliency, and strength but also how to stand in true form of understanding her spirit and never losing sight of what it takes her personally to find the positive and thrive her survival.

Leave a comment

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.

May 15, 2024