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GIANT LEAP FOR MUMKIND

Heartwarming moment toddler helps his mum learn to walk after she lost both legs to sepsis

AT first glance it looks like a photo of a devoted mum helping her toddler learn to walk.

But look closer and the heartwarming photo tells a different story.

 This touching photo shows 18-month-old Curtis taking his mum Lucie Kline's hand and helping her relearn how to walk after having both legs amputated
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This touching photo shows 18-month-old Curtis taking his mum Lucie Kline's hand and helping her relearn how to walk after having both legs amputatedCredit: Kennedy News and Media

Gripping Lucie Kline's hand, little Curtis is learning to walk - at the same time as his mum, who lost both legs to sepsis.

She said she was "overwhelmed with joy" at learning to walk again alongside her 18-month-old son.

Lucie, from Derby, in Kansas, said: "When I got my prosthetic legs we were both learning to walk at the same time.

"At first I had to walk with a walker and looked like a 90-year-old woman, but it worked, because eventually I was walking without any assistance.

"Curtis is walking everywhere now. He's running. And he learned to walk at the same time as me - we learned together."

Lucie's condition was so serious she feared she would die - and never get to see Curtis take his first steps.

So watching him hit that milestone was even more special, and spurred Lucie on.

"Seeing Curtis taking his steps before me really encouraged me to try and become more stable," she said.

"When I took my first steps it was incredible, I finally felt independent again."

 After having a hysterectomy, Lucie developed sepsis and slipped into a coma
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After having a hysterectomy, Lucie developed sepsis and slipped into a comaCredit: Kennedy News and Media

The mum-of-two had both legs amputated below the knee after blood poisoning ravaged her body following a hysterectomy in November 2018.

Lucie and her husband Lane, 25, decided they had completed their family.

So when she fell ill with period problems, Lucie opted for the operation to remove her womb.

When I took my first steps it was incredible, I finally felt independent again

Lucie Kline

Despite being well enough to leave hospital the day after her surgery, Lucie quickly became "very, very sick".

"I felt fine, I came home and walked out of hospital and was playing with my kids," she said.

"But the next day I pretty much lay in bed the entire day. I felt sick and tired.

"I felt very groggy, like I wasn't all there when I woke up. That's what made me decide to go to the hospital."

 When Lucie woke up she was shocked to see her feet and hands had turned black, where her flesh had died
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When Lucie woke up she was shocked to see her feet and hands had turned black, where her flesh had diedCredit: Kennedy News and Media
 Lucie had both legs amputated below the knee and also lost her fingers
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Lucie had both legs amputated below the knee and also lost her fingersCredit: Kennedy News and Media

By the time she arrived at the emergency room, Lucie had passed out and her condition began to quickly deteriorate.

"My blood pressure dropped, I stopped breathing on my own," she said.

"I became very, very sick very quickly."

Doctors had to perform exploratory surgery, to clean out the fluid collecting in Lucie's abdomen.

In the aftermath of her second surgery, the mum-of-two slipped into a coma.

When she finally woke up two weeks later, she spotted fuzzy socks had been put on her hands and feet.

Asking what they were, doctors reluctantly removed them.

 After having her prosthetics fitted she had to learn to walk again
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After having her prosthetics fitted she had to learn to walk againCredit: Kennedy News and Media
 Lucie said it was watching son Curtis take his first steps that spurred her on
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Lucie said it was watching son Curtis take his first steps that spurred her onCredit: Kennedy News and Media

Lucie was horrified by what she saw, her hands and feet had turned black and the flesh had died, as her body was ravaged by sepsis - or blood poisoning.

While Lane tried to stay positive for his wife, Lucie knew she would likely lose her limbs.

"It was hard to come round and see that, but I was lucky to be alive," she said.

Lucie lost her fingers and her legs below her knees.

The damage to Lucie's limbs was so severe that she needed 25 surgeries to remove the dead skin, tissue and perform grafts.

It was these procedures that proved the most painful, more so than losing her legs, Lucie said.

 Lucie said while she was horrified to lose her limbs she realised how lucky she was to be alive
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Lucie said while she was horrified to lose her limbs she realised how lucky she was to be aliveCredit: Kennedy News and Media

"You sit on your butt all day and that was what was covered in skin grafts," she said.

"I was sitting on a thin layer of skin and bone."

Almost a year on from her amputation surgeries, Lucie is now enjoying her new normal as a stay-at-home mum - and recently learned to drive again.

Lucie said: "I get to spend every day with the kids, cook dinner with the family, and there's not much healing anymore - I'm just back with them.

"I recently learnt how to drive again, which is pretty scary but I can do it. I'm back to the active mum I was before.

"My son really didn't know much at the time - he was a year old when I came home.

"But my daughter kept saying 'my mummy was in hospital. What's wrong?'

"When I started walking again she always turned to help and held onto my legs.

"It was very hard for her, but that's why I keep such a positive attitude."

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