Nicole Raab

My attacker had 3 guns while we were together. I was with him when he bought each one, so I knew they were registered. I described these guns in detail for my restraining order, but somehow, he got away with keeping his shotgun. He turned the other two into a gun shop. I unfortunately found this out three months later when I was walking out to my car to go to work. He shot a total of five slugs and three hit me. One in my left pelvis, one in my left arm, and the last one somewhere in the back of my leg. I called 911, and was awake until they took me into the Operating Room. I can remember every second of that day and the thought of dying never crossed my mind. There was no way this was going to be my ending.

When I went into surgery, I thought I was coming out without an arm. I had made peace with it and I told myself that I would get back to nursing and snowboarding by the end of the year. Amazingly they ended up saving my arm. I went through a lot of physical therapy and was doing pretty well until my arm became infected. It was so infected that I had to make the tough decision to either keep my arm and have multiple surgeries to try and fix It, or to amputate. I chose to amputate. It was a tough decision. A lot of pro and con lists and conversations with other amputees. When I decided to amputate it was like a weight was lifted. Instead of panicking or being depressed about it, my family and friends decided to make light of it. We had a goodbye party for my hand, and everyone was so supportive, and I felt so much love. Amputating my left hand was the best decision for me. I don’t let losing my hand get in the way of who I am and what I want to do. I was back up on a snowboard nine months after getting shot and back to working as an Oncology nurse one year and five months after getting injured.