His son, Andrew Lerman, told CNN that they made funeral arrangements and prepared his coffin and headstone to say goodbye.
“He’s like, ‘Okay, I want you to come here right away.’ I was like, ‘Okay, what’s wrong?'” Lerman said. “He goes, ‘Okay, nothing’s wrong. Your mom woke up.'”
Lerman said he dropped the phone when he got the news.
Lerman said his mother, who turned 70 in February, had several health conditions, including diabetes, and had a heart attack and quadruple bypass surgery a few years ago.
She said she started showing Covid-19 symptoms in early September, was diagnosed when she went to the hospital on September 12 and went on a ventilator on the 21st.
She had not been vaccinated, but was planning on getting her shots when she got sick, he said.
His condition worsened and doctors told the family that he was not expected to recover.
“We had a family meeting with the hospital because my mother wasn’t awake. No matter what they did, they couldn’t tell her to wake up,” Lerman said. “They said his lungs were completely destroyed. There’s irreversible damage — that it’s not going to happen.”
It’s been nearly three weeks since she awoke on October 29, and a hospital spokeswoman told CNN she was in critical condition. The hospital could not release any additional information due to privacy laws.
Lerman said that her mother did not suffer any organ failure and that no one really understood how she was doing so well.
“My mom is very religious and she has a lot of friends, and church, and everything else and they are all praying for her,” he said. “So they can’t explain it on the medical side. Maybe it’s on the religious side. I’m not that religious, but I’m starting to believe there’s something that helped her. I don’t know.”
Lerman said she spoke to her mother for hours on Wednesday, and she has been able to move her arms and arms and breathe on her own for a few hours at a time with some oxygen support instead of a ventilator.
“She knows where she is, who she is—she’s as sharp as a nail,” Lerman said. “Usually, when someone comes out of a coma like this, they say that patients have delirium where they are very confused. From day one, he hasn’t experienced anything like that.”
She said she hasn’t come out of the woods yet, and she may still have tremors, but the medical staff is looking at her on an enlistment for rehab to help her regain her range of motion.
She is already receiving physical therapy to help her rebuild the muscle strength she lost during the exam.
Lerman and his mother live in Florida, but they were both coming to Maine to care for their father, who has stage 4 cancer. Lerman’s father got COVID around the same time as Lerman’s mother, but he recovered.
When they didn’t think she would recover, Lerman said, the family left their mother’s Florida apartment, collecting important family belongings and donating the rest of their belongings to other residents in their building.
Lerman said her mother had told her she was praying when she was in a coma and she remembers people coming to see her and talking to her.
“So the words of encouragement I have don’t give up hope, and when you meet your family members in this situation, talk to them because they can hear you,” he said.
He also said that every Covid case is different and he knows that not everyone will be able to recover like his mother.
“It’s a miracle,” he said.