Big Isle woman grateful after near-fatal collapse
An ectopic pregnancy results in a series of five heart stoppages
HILO » Tamar Kaneta plans to spend more time enjoying fresh air and trees following her recovery from nearly dying five times Sept. 8.
Kaneta says she has received a miracle in surviving a ruptured Fallopian tube caused by an ectopic pregnancy. She wants people to slow down in their fast-paced lives and feel the spirituality she feels since her recovery.
"I want to feel grateful," said the 29-year-old woman from Paradise Park subdivision south of Hilo.
Her boyfriend, Toby Asuncion, added: "Don't wait until something like this happens until you believe again. Without your family, you don't have anything."
Kaneta was a self-described workaholic until the medical emergency. She worked up to 12 hours a day, six days a week doing laundry and housecleaning at the Fairways Villas condominiums, a two-hour drive to the other side of the Big Island from where she lives.
ROD THOMPSON / RTHOMPSON@STARBULLETIN.COM
Tamar Kaneta, center, sat with boyfriend Toby Asuncion and mother Mary Kaneta at Hilo Medical Center yesterday, recovering from a nearly fatal problem pregnancy. Her heart stopped five times Friday before doctors stabilized her.
"I just loved working. It's like a drive for me," she said. She also liked earning money, not for frivolities, but to support her extended family.
She is one of 13 people living in her mother's house, a sign of what her family has to do to cope with the high cost of living.
Although she doesn't attend church, she reads the Bible.
And she had no idea she was three months pregnant.
About three weeks ago, she felt pain near her left hip. She got a treatment with an electrical device from a chiropractor followed a week later by a chiropractic adjustment. Both times she felt better.
But on Friday morning, she felt sharp pain in her belly and stopped breathing. Kaneta doesn't remember anything from that time until she woke up days later.
Her mother's boyfriend gave her mouth-to-mouth resuscitation while family members drove her to a fire station to get an ambulance.
On the way to the hospital, paramedics gave her electroshock to restart her heart, the first of five such events that day.
After operating to remove her left ovary, doctors told the family she could still die or could be handicapped for the rest of her life. Enjoying complete recovery, discharged from the hospital yesterday, Kaneta said, "It's a miracle I'm here."
The baby would have been her first. Coming from a family of eight children, she had wanted just a girl and boy. Yesterday she jokingly said she now wants 10, 20, 50 or 100 children.
The entire family praised Hilo Medical Center and its doctors.
"I kind of lost faith in doctors. They can't do anything," Mary Kaneta said about her feelings before her daughter's emergency. "After today, doctors are amazing now."