LAKELAND, Fla. - It's now been two years since Cristie White was told by her doctors to call her family and say her goodbyes. Today, she's 90% recovered from COVID-19 and opening up about how her recovery journey inspired her to write a song and publish a Bible study book now available on Amazon.
A video of Charlie White, Cristie's husband of 35 years, singing to her over FaceTime as she lay in her hospital bed fighting for her life captured the hearts of so many. Her family was desperate and holding on to hope she would beat the odds and make a full recover.
That is exactly what happened.
"They didn't have much hope for me, and they had me call my family members and tell them goodbyes," Cristie said. "Thankfully, I don't remember that phone call, but my kids remember that and my parents, too, and my brother, but God had other plans because I'm still here."
Exactly two years ago this October, Cristie was admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 where she spent 16 days, eight of them on a ventilator.
"I do remember my husband that when the nurses told me that he was going to be calling me on the inside, I was jumping up and down, and I was just so happy because there's something about hearing the voice of someone you love that just makes all the difference," Cristie said.
Her husband kept up the singing, and she kept improving. She was eventually released from the hospital in November 2020.
"It was wonderful to be alive, but there was a lot of rehabilitation. I couldn't comb my hair, I couldn't hardly feed myself," Cristie said.
Now two years later, she said she feels 90% recovered.
"The biggest thing is probably breathing. I still go see a pulmonologist, and it's hard for me to take deep breaths," Cristie said.
However, her singing voice stayed intact. Her COVID-19 journey inspired her to write a song and publish a Bible study book now available on Amazon. Ultimately, she said her faith, her family and her music got her through.
"I'm just so thankful. Every day is a gift. Every time I get to spend with my family, it's just a treasure," Cristie said.