The story of Maria Laura: the car accident
“What’s the name of that singer who rides a Vespa on the Bolognese hills?” A question asked by Maria Laura’s roommate, to pass the time, during a long hospitalization. And she, after days of silence, with a faint voice, replied: “Cesare Cremonini”. So Maria Laura returned to the world. A few words, after a long coma from a car accident. A voice that emerged from the darkness that brought her back to her life as a student. She is now 29 years old. She tells of her very slow awakening of her, because from her coma one does not come out suddenly like in the movies, but with very small daily conquests. She first opened her eyes to the Ospedale Maggiore in Bologna and, as the days went by, she managed to speak. Then the long stay in Luca De Nigris’ Casa dei Risvegli.
Maria Laura, Anna, Edoardo, Francesco and Daniel are the protagonists of Awakenings. Stories of those who came back to life after an event that broke it. Of those who are emotionally reborn after a cardiac arrest, a stroke, a coma. But also of those who have undergone an intervention to find their identity. Everything happens as in a succession of sliding doors that lead to a second chance. A truck on the highway hit Maria Laura’s car. After the coma, she resumed studying. She that day she was bringing some documents to the university and for this reason she would abandon her studies for nothing in the world. You have to do it.
Anna: a sudden stroke
Stories of those who like Anna, with an important career, have seen her life change in a few seconds. A magistrate suffering from a stroke, after a day of rest spent with her friends. At that moment everything took a different direction. Blocked movements, hospitals, rehabilitation have become her everyday life. But she didn’t stop. Enough to travel from Genoa to Rome by ambulance, just to attend a business meeting. And today, after difficult months, she has become a member of the anti-mafia. “Will I be back as before?”, She asked her at the rehabilitation center. “As before, no, you will be different, another you”, she replied. “Suddenly life breaks. There is a before and an after. Sometimes you are less lucky and everything ends. I realized I had to react,” she says.
Daniel: the heart that stops while in class
There are those who, like Daniel, fell ill during adolescence. His heart stopped in class. “I hadn’t done my homework, the teacher caught me and said I should do it for the next time. Those homework, however, I never gave”, he says. He got sick and the teacher used all the knowledge and strength she had to keep him alive. Today Daniel has resumed sports, although not as before. From that bad episode, something positive was born. “We have anticipated the provisions of the law introducing compulsory safety training at school. Last year – says Miriam Pistillo, the teacher who saved him – we trained 820 students: now they are able to do a cardio-pulmonary massage. . And we will teach them to use the defibrillator. “.
Francesco: his two transplants
There are those who have had three hearts. Francesco was in his early twenties when he felt ill. From that day on he started traveling from Calabria to Lazio and Lombardy to be treated. Two transplants and two new hearts. “I stopped to listen to the pulse. He reassured me and-tells-after the first intervention I was moved but I tried not to be overwhelmed by emotion”. On his journey he met Giusi: they got married and now they dream of having children.CopyAMP code
Edward: born in a body that did not belong to him
Then there are those who had no choice. Everything apparently in his place, but it wasn’t like that. Edward, born into a body that did not match his gender identity, needed to change to be well. “The body is our business card. When we are forced to show an envelope that does not correspond to our feelings, it is difficult to have authentic and sincere relationships, it is impossible for our true identity to emerge”, he says. Edoardo says he is lucky because his parents have understood this. “Their support was fundamental, they were support and certainty. Tackling this path alone is very difficult, everything gets complicated”, he explains. The journey has been long and complicated and at times he was afraid of not making it. “At 40, nothing seemed to make more sense. I thought about suicide. But then I succumbed to the beauty of life.”