In 2012, college student Aimee Copeland made a seemingly harmless decision that altered her life forever. At the time, Aimee was 24-years-old and studying for her Master’s degree at the University of Georgia. While taking a break over the weekend, she and a group of friends went to a local river to enjoy the day swimming and catching some sun. The group found a makeshift zip-line over the river and Aimee gave it a try.
While up on the zip-line, it snapped and sent Aimee plunging down. She fell onto some rocks and suffered a deep gash in her leg. It took the doctors 22 staples to close the gash in her calf. Aimee noticed a few days later that she still was not feeling right.
She went back to the hospital where she learned that she had contracted a flesh-eating bacteria and that five her her major organs were going into failure. Doctors needed to perform emergency amputation surgery in order to save her life. Aimee lost both of her arms below the elbows and her left leg up to her hip and her right leg below her knee.
Aimee had to readjust to her new life. She completed rehab treatments and was given state-of-the-art prosthetic hands which would allow her to do everyday tasks again. She ended her relationship with her boyfriend when he could no longer handle the changes in her life. She also graduated with her Master’s in Social Work.
Aimee soon met a new man who loved her for exactly who she was. Aimee and her new man recently took a vacation together to sunny Puerto Rico. There, the two spent some time relaxing on the beach. Aimee posed for a picture in her pink bikini- sans her prosthetic limbs with a huge smile on her face. She posted the picture to Facebook saying that it took her a long time to come to terms with her new body and to be comfortable with it. But there is beauty in the imperfections and so much more beauty on the inside of everyone.
Aimee’s photo and inspirational words have now gone viral.