12-year-old Kali Hardig was never even expected to survive the deadly brain-eating amoeba that infected her, but now she has been released from the hospital and is heading home. ABC News reported on Sept. 11, 2013, that the little girl contracted the brain-eating infection nine weeks ago at an Arkansas water park, but survived the scare.
“I was real sick,” Kali told ABC News. “Momma wouldn’t leave the hospital at all. Momma was scared to leave me. She told me.”
On Sept. 11, 2013, Kali Hardig was released from the Arkansas Children's Hospital where she has fought for her life since July 19, 2013. She says she is "ready to go home" and "play with Chloe," her little Yorkie. But, it wasn't even expected that Kali Hardig would ever go home.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that only 128 known infections like Kali's have been found in the United States in the past 50 years. Kali Hardig is only the third person to survive.
Young Kali has had intensive therapy and had special medication flown in from Germany. Doctors said that Kali Hardig can thank her mother though, and the speed with which she got her daughter to the hospital.
“Can you remember what you said … the first time you spoke to me?” Hardig asked her daughter.
“‘Momma,’” Kali replied. “And mom was ecstatic.”
Kali Hardig is hopeful that doctors will allow her to return to school on Sept. 16, 2013, for at least the first half of the day. From there, she will go on to continue her therapy for the second half of her miracle comeback.