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Yorkshire woman says 'angel' saved her after she 'died and came back to life'

Yorkshire woman says 'angel' saved her after she 'died and came back to life'

A Yorkshire woman who "died and came back to life" after being given just a 6% chance of pulling through says her miraculous recovery is thanks to an "angel".

Kirsty Bortoft, 49, had been working from home in Bridlington, in January 2021 when her partner found her lifeless body on the sofa as he walked through the door. Stu Clark, a 47-year-old managing director at a car dealership, immediately started doing CPR and called 999.

Paramedics arrived within six minutes and restarted Kirsty's heart using a defibrillator. Once her heartbeat had regulated, the mum-of-three was rushed to Scarborough General Hospital.

Medical staff put her into a medically induced coma for 48 hours and told Stu to prepare for the worst as they were worried she wouldn't pull through. It is thought Kirsty could have been dead for forty minutes.

Stu says he had "a premonition" Kirsty would "come back" two days later after she was put into a coma and told her to return so he could marry her.

Kirsty's friend, Claire Kendal, who had "no idea" what had happened to her, phoned Kirsty's sister in Australia to tell her she could see "Kirsty's spirit" in her living room in Spain and "she wanted to get back to her body".

Despite being given just a 6% chance of survival, two days later Kirsty was brought out of her coma and made a miraculous recovery from 'cardiac death' - sudden cardiac arrest. Stu then proposed to her seven times as she came back around because she kept forgetting she had accepted.

Kirsty said she owes her survival to "an angel" - a stranger who went to help Stu's client who had broken down. It meant he got home in time to save her life. Kirsty, a mind coach and meditation teacher, said: "I don't remember much but Stu was told to prepare for the worst.

"It was a Friday, and I was working from home because it was lockdown. The last time I was seen on WhatsApp was 4.49pm and Stu walked in at 5.29pm.

"I was sat on the sofa with my eyes open - not breathing. He didn't think I was going to make it - I had turned a weird dark red colour and had hexagon shapes all over my skin."

According to Kirsty, Stu called the ambulance and immediately did CPR - with medics arriving at the scene within six minutes. After 40 minutes of CPR, paramedics finally found Kirsty's heartbeat and could then use a defibrillator to regulate it before rushing her to Scarborough Hospital around 30 minutes away.

"I was then taken into ICU and put into a coma," Kirsty said. "My friend, Claire, who had no clue what had happened, called my sister in Australia to say she had my spirit in her front room in Spain and that my spirit wanted her to write lists to my sons.

"She refused and told me to get back into my body. The hospital staff prepared Stu for the worst and didn't think I would make it - no wonder, I was in Spain doing some admin!"

Two days later on Sunday, Stu told Kirsty she needed to come back because he wanted to marry her. Doctors decided to bring Kirsty out of her coma but had no idea what the prognosis would be and what had happened - they feared she could be brain dead.

She said: "I came out and had no idea what was going on, so I freaked out, I started pulling all the tubes out of me, so they put me back under." According to Kirsty, doctors then decided to see if her body would cope unhooked to the machines - and miraculously it did.

Kirsty said: "I came back and was conscious, but I wasn't completely present for three days - I think because of all the drugs. Stu proposed to me seven times but I kept forgetting - finally I remembered proposal number seven.

"It brought a lot of love and joy to the whole ward. Stu could only see me through a window because of Covid and had to FaceTime doctors to see what had happened."

Kirsty says she owes the fact she is alive today to a stranger who helped one of Stu's clients who had broken down. She said: "Stu was called out to go and help someone whose car had broken down but he then got a call to say a stranger had already helped, so he didn't have to go.

"I wouldn't be here today because he wouldn't have found me," she said. "It's like it all lines up and I got sent back for a reason."

Doctors were baffled as to what had happened to Kirsty and struggled to pinpoint why she "died". Kirsty had a defibrillator fitted - a small device which regulates the heart's rhythm - in case her heart stops again.

Kirsty underwent tests - including a lung x-ray - to try and establish what had happened to her. "The radiographer had seen me just before I was put into a coma and couldn't believe it was me," she said. "There was water and scarring in my lungs and it had completely gone.

"I kept telling the doctors 'I know I might have just died but I'm really fit and healthy', and I meditated. There was a white golden light healing me.

"I have no memory from those three days but I came back into my body knowing I had to continue my life from total gratitude, and I needed to share my story with the world."

Kirsty has always been on a spiritual path since she became an Ishaya monk in 2015 but has become more at peace with herself since the near-death experience. She said: "I was anxious 17 years ago and suffered with panic attacks, I decided to retrain as a mind coach and meditation teacher and then became a monk.

"I meditate every morning and drink a peppermint tea followed by a two-minute cold shower. I try and get out every morning for a walk with my dog and Stu before I start my day.

"I say 'thank you' every evening. I don't know who I'm thanking but I'm so grateful to live. I'm appreciative of all the little things such as the change of seasons and the sun coming up."

The mind coach also sets intentions every day, anchors her day around 'being more present' and ensures she tells her three sons she loves them. "I want to help others to live the best way they can . It's so easy to dwell and focus on what's wrong in our society but the biggest thing about mental health is it's the mind, and you can learn to control that," she said. You can keep up to date with Kirsty's spiritual journey on her tiktok @Kirstybortoft.