Lyn Harrison doesn't remember much after she was admitted to the hospital with COVID-19 last year.
However, she remembers when a nurse asked her to say her final goodbyes to her husband, shortly after she was placed into a coma while in the intensive care unit.
Ms Harrison, from Bendigo, contracted COVID-19 together with her husband, days after returning home from an overseas trip back in March 2020.
The couple had been on a bus tour in New Zealand in March when someone in their tour tested positive for COVID-19.
"It was very early and we all really didn't know what was happening with the virus in the world," Ms Harrison said.
"There was very little cases in New Zealand and our tour was still going ahead but my daughters raised concerns."
When the couple landed back in Australia, they went into self-isolation immediately for two weeks.
Mr Harrison's daughter from Melbourne called them up once they got back home.
Shortly after a quick conversation, she called the coronavirus hotline to be safe.
"The ambulance came and picked us up, they took us to get tested and we were positive," she said.
The couple's initial symptoms included bad headaches and a slight cough but about two days into the infection, the couple deteriorated significantly.
"Doug was very sick and there were two nights where they didn't expect him to make it through the night," Ms Harrison said.
"A few days later, I was taken to the hospital and that's where I went down hill."
After about two weeks, Mr Harrison was allowed to leave the hospital but it was a different story for his wife.
Ms Harrison was particularly unwell, spending seven weeks in hospital, three were in intensive care, and two of those she was on a ventilator.
"I just was so sick and I didn't know what was happening," she said.
She ended up spending nearly two months in hospital.
Within those months, Ms Harrison was placed in an induced coma, suffered seizures, placed on a ventilator and had a blood infection.
She was finally given the all-clear and was told she was COVID-free on April 27 before being discharged on May 13.
Get vaccinated for your family
For Ms Harrison's daughters, Sophia Elliott and Kate Murphy it was a horrific experience.
Together they want to shine light on the effects COVID can have on not only the infected family member, but wider family.
Ms Elliot said one of the hardest things about the whole experience was not being able to visit and support their mother in the hospital.
"It was so difficult and hard for mum, particularly when she was coming out of the coma," she said.
"She didn't have the grounding and support from family with her and I think that made it worse.
"We had a lovely nurse who was texting the family and asked if we wanted to FaceTime and we ended up FaceTiming a nurse who was in full PPE and I was crying and it was so difficult.
"The nurse was explaining to me what was happening and was showing what my mum was looking like and that was tough, to see your mum like that over phone was terrible.
"It was hard not being there and it was hard to do everything over video and phone.
"Instead of talking to her, all we wanted to do was hold her hand."
Ms Murphy said it was extremely hard as things were changing everyday and little information was available.
"We didn't know what was going on and that's not having an issue with the doctors or nurses, no one knew what was happening, it was so early in the pandemic," she said.
"They didn't know what to expect and things were changing everyday."
For both sisters, telling their children was even more difficult.
It was difficult not being there in person and it was hard to do everything over video and phone... instead of talking to her, all we wanted to do was hold her hand.Sophia Elliott
"It was very hard and I always remember the day I told my eldest who is 12," Ms Elliott said.
"My kids are a little older, and they knew what COVID was and had an understanding but still it was pure disbelief," Ms Murphy said.
Ms Elliott said the couple are both still recovering from the virus, 12 months on.
"You might see mum out and she might look fit and fine but the next day, she will be exhausted and won't be able to do anything," she said.
"I think that's what people don't see, yes she has made it but she is still struggling."
Ms Harrison said she feels like she has aged five to ten years since recovering from the virus.
"I was planting some seedlings the other day in the garden and it took me a couple of days to plant them all," she said.
"I just don't have the energy that I had before."
Get vaccinated now
As Bendigo hits the 90 per cent first dose vaccination rate, Ms Harrison hopes her story will encourage the remainder of the community to roll up their sleeves.
Ms Harrison said there was no COVID-19 vaccine when she fell ill with the virus, but said there is one now.
"I don't understand why people won't get vaccinated and I even know some people that won't get it," she said.
"Don't just do it for yourself, do it for your family, those you love and your community."
The couple credit the team at Bendigo Health for their recovery.
I am just so thankful for the team of nurses and doctors that helped us and they were amazing," Ms Harrison said.
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