A young Sydney woman is lucky to be alive after a major artery exploded in her brain as she sat on the toilet at work.
Leola Rose didn’t have a headache when she rocked up to work on November 5, 2010 and had no idea of how much her life was about to change.
After hearing a loud bang, the 28-year-old said her hearing and vision cut out and she fell to the ground, unable to move.
A colleague spotted her and launched over the bathroom door to help Ms Rose, who was unable to talk or explain what had happened.
Rushed to Sydney’s Ryde Hospital, medical staff thought the bleeding on her brain was from hitting her head on the toilet.
They did not know she had suffered a life-threatening brain aneurysm.
Transferred to Macquarie Hospital for exploratory surgery, it took five hours to locate the brain bleed.
That’s when doctors informed her father, Lawrence, and boyfriend-now-husband, Mervyn, that she had just a one-in-five chance of survival.
After a seemingly successful non-invasive procedure, Ms Rose’s condition spiralled out of control doctors were forced to remove part of her skull and clip the artery to stop bleeding.
So began a gruelling rehabilitation process that has spanned seven years and is far from over.
“Learning how to walk again in your late 20s is not something that happens often and not something you think would be difficult (since you've been walking your whole life already!),” the motivational speaker wrote on her Facebook page.
“Since my aneurysm I have been left single sided deaf, I stutter and slur when I’m nervous or tired, I have no equilibrium and often stumble.
“I have since survived serious brain injury, I have lost my job, been unemployed for over 6 months, started my own business, and have purchased my third home in Sydney.”
She is now using her own health battles as part of her motivational speaking, encouraging her followers to make the most out of their lives.