Former Muskogee Rougher Makes Comeback After Battling Graves' Disease
MUSKOGEE, Oklahoma - In 2016, Aaliyah Wilson was a Muskogee Rougher about to attend the University of Arkansas, but now, in 2017, things have changed.
She transferred to Texas A&M and her health condition changed.
Wilson had it all last year. She was a McDonald's All-American and a 2016 Gatorade Player of the Year. She was also invited to try out for Team USA. Aaliyah was ready for her freshman year at the University of Arkansas when something went wrong.
"So, I was blessed to have a healthy life and then here I am. I'm in a hospital bed," Wilson said.
Wilson was diagnosed with Graves' Disease and her immune system began to harm her instead of helping her. Playing the game she loves was put on hold.
"Not being able to touch or shoot or go run or anything that's second nature to me, it really sucked," Wilson said.
Although Graves' disease is rarely life-threatening, Wilson was in a battle with her family at her side.
"Most people don't realize how hard it was how many nights we stayed up," said Sheri Wilson, Aaliyah's mother. "I seen her literally at death's door."
Wilson missed almost six months of basketball, but the treatment was working and her doctors told her what she wanted to hear - it was time to play again.
"I know I had a little emotional moment cause I'm like, 'it's finally over.' I'm sure they were pretty excited themselves. To know that I still have my child here you know. I'm not minus one child," Wilson's mother said.
In her return debut, Wilson scored 10 points off the bench. Now she's off on a new journey.
"Not just even for myself but for anybody. If you just keep believing in yourself and knowing if I keep believing in God and having faith, I can reach those heights that I want," she said.