Stephanie Nielson: Mommy blogger left with 80 per cent burns to her body after plane crash overcomes ordeal to give birth to fifth child
By Daily Mail Reporter
PUBLISHED: 13:33 EST, 10 May 2012 | UPDATED: 13:33 EST, 10 May 2012
A popular Mormon 'Mommy blogger' who survived an horrific plane crash with 80 per cent burns to her body has spoken about the ordeal - and how she overcame it to give birth to her fifth child.
Speaking on the Today show, Stephanie Nielson, who writes about motherhood on her blog the Nie Nie Dialogues, has recounted the pain and guilt she felt following the accident in 2008.
'I think "guilty" was the first word I could say after,' she said. 'I didn't want [my children] to grow up with a mother like me because at the time I thought that was life for me and it wouldn't get better.
'Of course we know that's not true. I had faith and wonderful people to help me get out of that.' She added: 'We're doing better than ever.'
Scroll down for video
On the mend: Mommy blogger Stephanie Nielson and her husband Christian were in a plane crash that put them both in medically-induced comas. They have just had their fifth child
Before the crash: Stephanie writes a popular blog called the Nie Nie Dialogues about her family: (L-R) Jane, Nicholas, Claire, husband Christian and Oliver - and now baby Charlotte
She gave birth to her and her husband's fifth child, Charlotte, a month ago.
At first doctors 'were concerned,' she said. 'It took me a while to even ask if I could have another baby because I was scared they would say no.' They agreed to monitor Stephanie closely.
Stephanie was 27 when she and her husband left their four children with their grandparents and took off in a small Cessna airplane from their home in Mesa, Arizona to New Mexico in August 2008.
Her husband Christian, a licensed pilot, was flying the plane with his friend and flight instructor, Doug Kinneard, when the aircraft stalled after a stop for fuel - and plummeted to the ground.
Showing their support: (L-R) Nicholas, Jane, Oliver and Claire also accompanied their mother to the show
Hope: Stephanie was nervous to ask doctors if she could have another baby; last month Charlotte was born
Christian was left with 30 per cent burns to his body and woke after five weeks, while Stephanie was in a medically-induced coma for four months. Doug, a father of four, did not survive the crash.
Feats: Stephanie gave birth to Charlotte the same day her book was released. 'I delivered two babies that day,' she said
Life before the crash was 'ideal', Stephanie recounted to Today. 'It was the life I had wanted.'
But after the crash, the Nielson's struggled to get back on their feet.
'It was a real low point,' Christian remembered. 'I've never had to deal with that much trauma emotionally and physically. The outlook for our life that we once enjoyed was bleak.
'When I saw Stephanie for the first time it was worrisome.'
She continued: 'I was completely confused and frustrated and worried. I couldn't talk, I couldn't move my body - I was frustrated in every sense of the word.'
In a previous interview with Today, she said it took her five weeks after waking up to finally look at her own reflection and realise that her face had been completely transformed.
She underwent months of surgeries and skin grafts at the Arizona Burn Center.
The burns on her face had been so bad, doctors had had to cut all the skin away and cadaver skin was placed on top.
Eventually her own skin - from her scalp, arm and back - replaced the cadaver skin. They also used cultured skin grown in a Boston lab to cover the wounds.
When her four children, who had all been under seven at the time of the crash, were reunited with their mother, they were speechless and unable to look at her.
Of her daughter Jane, she said: 'It was awful to not have your own daughter not want to look at you just felt very, word, words just don't even describe that feeling.'
Horrific: Stephanie, Christian and their friend Doug were on board the plane when it stalled and crashed in 2008
Pain: Stephanie was in a coma for four months. When she woke up, she feared she was scaring her children
Fighter: Stephanie was left with 80 per cent burns to her body and underwent skin graft surgeries
Stephanie's oldest daughter, Claire, would only talk to her through a curtain. She added that she hated not being able to play with her children or comb their hair.
But by the third visit, she said, things were back to normal and easy again. She also received emotional and financial support from her thousands of devoted readers on the Nie Nie Dialogues.
Now Stephanie, whose blog is so far reaching it is also followed by women who are neither Mormons nor mothers, has written a book entitled Heaven is Here that describes how she overcame the pain.
It was released on the same day Charlotte was born. 'I delivered two babies that day,' she told Today.
See below for video
Visit msnbc.com for breaking news, world news, and news about the economy
Headlines Newsview all
Amanda Holden at the centre of Twitter backlash as she sends daughter to school dressed as Pretty Woman prostitute for fancy dress day
A parenting group has slammed TV star Amanda Holden for posting a picture of her nine-year-old daughter 'dressed as a prostitute' online.The Britain's Got Talent ... Full story
Grandmother filmed confronting militants and branding them 'devils' before quoting verses in the Koran that forbid slaughter
An incredible video has emerged showing the moment an elderly woman bravely confronted two Islamic State militants, telling them their terror group is cursed and ... Full story
Jobseeker shocked to be sent rudest rejection email ever calling him an 'old, aesthetically challenged professional pr*** with no teeth'
A jobseeker was shocked after he was branded as 'irritating', 'rude' and 'obnoxious' in a cutting email accidentally sent to him by a prospective employer.James ... Full story
Rate this article
MOST POPULAR ON CAPITALBAY
- Sickness and disability benefits could be reduced by £30 a week as part of £12bn welfare cuts
- Sick and disabled benefits could be reduced by £30 a week as part of £12bn welfare cuts
- NHS needs more funding this year or patient care could suffer, say health experts
Thomson and First Choice have cancelled flights to Tunisia this weekTravel agents will evacuate as many as 2,500 Brits from Tunisia todayAnyone on Thomas ...
Aown Dogar fell into the murky river near Donnington Bridge in OxfordCould not be dragged out by rescue crews who were called around 7pm Described as ...
Surf’s up! Boardriders take on the biggest waves in years off at remote Western Australian break churned up by massive offshore storm
Surfers in Western Australia gathered to brave treacherous conditions after a storm produced the 'swell of a decade'The massive swell is a result of strong ...
Iggy Azalea met 39-year-old Maurice Williams, aka Hefe Wine, when she was a vulnerable 17-year-old 'fresh off the bus' from AustraliaWilliams claims that Azalea gave ...
Teenage boy arrested after police discover list of people he wanted to killThe list reportedly was of people who he planned to behead in an ...
Suspected car thief stripped naked and 'jumped from roof to roof' to escape police sniffer dog... but it caught is when witnesses notice nude man acting strangely
Two men were spotted driving a stolen vehicle in Mount Lawley, PerthPolice allege they crashed the car into a fence and fled the scene Officers deployed ...
ANZ rejects human rights commissioner's recommendation to apologise to a man after company refused to hire him for his armed robbery offence
Gillian Triggs handed down her recommendations to ANZ in MarchThe report was into discrimination in employment based on criminal recordIt reveals that a man, Mr ...
No windows or walls, and barely enough room to lie down: Remarkable pictures reveal the cramped conditions inside Tokyo's infamous 'shoebox' hotels
By Daniel Piotrowski for Daily Mail Australia Published: 02:15 GMT, 27 June 2015 | Updated: 07:24 GMT, 27 June 2015 ...
By Michael Burleigh for the Daily Mail Published: 21:00 GMT, 26 June 2015 | Updated: 07:15 GMT, 27 June 2015 ...
Does your summer look like this? How the Rich Kids of Instagram are spending their holidays... from road trips in luxury cars to sunbathing on million-dollar yachts
These unapologetically rich teens are celebrating their summers in styleThey have all documented their self-indulgent experiences on InstagramThese include flying to lavish holiday resorts via ...