Aimee Copeland was 24 when she went exploring in the Georgia wilderness one day with a group of girlfriends and came across a homemade zip-line.
While Copeland soaring above shallow waters, the wire snapped and the University of Georgia master’s student crashed into the rocks below.
The fall left a large gash on her outer left calf, and Copeland was rushed to the hospital where where she received 22 surgical staples.
But Copeland remained in a tremendous amount of pain and knew something wasn’t right.
Three days later, Copeland awoke covered in “blood blisters, and overnight, her left leg had rotted to her thigh and she couldn’t speak,” according to People magazine.
Doctors immediately identified the wounds as a rare flesh-eating bacteria called necrotizing fasciitis.
In order to save Copeland’s life, doctors had to remove parts of all four of her limbs.
Copeland was told she would never walk again without at least two crutches, but just a year later she proved everyone wrong.
Four years later, at age 28, Copeland is now able to embrace her new body.
She posted her first bikini photo on Facebook this week, explaining in the caption:
“It has taken me a long time to become comfortable with and accept my new body. We are ALL made with imperfections and there is so much beauty in our flaws. The scars and skin grafting build character! It’s not about what you have — what you do with what you have is what really counts.”
The responses to the post have been overwhelmingly positive:
Copeland’s accident hasn’t slowed her down.
She uses her Facebook page to show off her many inspirational adventures.
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