One Tulsa mother is celebrating more than her diploma.
Alison McFarlane was as determined as ever to get her degree in Interior Design, but she never thought that she’d have to go through so much, which made Monday night so meaningful.
McFarlane is now a college graduate, graduating from Tulsa Community College, with family by her side, including her now 16-year-old daughter Hannah. A sight that McFarlane cherishes, as just two years ago she received a call no parent ever wants to get.
"I got a call to say that Hannah had been hit by a car," she said.
McFarlane says her daughter was unconscious, wasn't breathing, and her left arm was shattered.
"She was transported to St. Francis Hospital in the ER,” said McFarlane. “Ten days in the ICU and another week there in the trauma floor."
Her daughter had a traumatic brain injury. She says her daughter was transferred to a Texas hospital, where she underwent physical and occupational therapy.
"It was awful. I mean, here's my 14-year-old daughter who was a huge soccer player and played the band, and all that was stripped away from her instantly," said McFarlane.
During that same time, McFarlane was also a full-time student at TCC, driving back and forth between her daughter in Texas and her classes in Tulsa.
"Do all my drafting and all my sketches on the little hospital tables that you have in the corner and sit with her," she said.
After five surgeries, two months in the hospital, and a year-and-a-half of rehab, Hannah got to watch her mom graduate. A gift that can never be replicated.
"I think that’s the biggest thing, that she’s sitting out there tonight,” stated McFarlane. “When it happened, I didn't think that she’d be there, so she really is a walking miracle."
Hannah is now in 10th grade at Bishop Kelly and runs on their cross-country team.