MILWAUKEE — From stomach pains to septic shock, a Milwaukee mother is lucky to be alive after a sudden illness left her permanently disabled. Now she faces another blow on her road to recovery.
A weekend fundraiser ended badly when someone stole the donation jar with hundreds of dollars in it. Despite the loss, Kia Brazil remained optimistic about the future.
Brazil was back to being a mom on Tuesday, playing with her kids just a few months after she became deathly ill.
"An infection in my blood stream went through my body in a matter of moments," Brazil told WITI.
"My limbs started dying out, starting with my feet, my fingertips," said Brazil. Her trip to the emergency room with stomach pains ended with sepsis.
She ended up having to have her legs and fingers amputated.
"One day I was absolutely normal. The next day, I don't know what happened," said Brazil.
She was left disabled and forced to learn how to adapt to a new lifestyle.
"That's probably the hardest of it all. I go from being completely independent..." said Brazil.
She now needs assistance through much of her daily routine.
"I was terrified," said Brazil.
With support from loved ones, that fear turned into perseverance.
"I'm determined to get back to myself," said Brazil. "I'm determined to be able to go out and work. I've seen people with with disabilities all the time."
With a few more surgeries in her future, Brazil said she was hopeful she'd be able to get prosthetics so she could get back to work and provide for her family. However, they're costly, on top of her mounting hospital bills.
"I need help," said Brazil. "I'm not afraid to say it. I need help."
A GoFundMe account was created to help her.
"Now that I'm in that situation, I know I can do it," said Brazil. "I've got to still be that role model for my kids. I want everyone to know it's possible."
As for the stolen money, Brazil said she didn't want to dwell on it. Instead, she wanted to surround herself with happiness and positivity.