Jo's rattler bite and how she lived to write about it - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Jo's rattler bite and how she lived to write about it

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SAN DIEGO (CBS 8) - News 8's chopper reporter Jo Eager has spent the last decade of her life chasing down stories. But five years ago, she became the story when a rattlesnake attacked her.

Jo was asked to write about her near death experience in the new "Chicken Soup for the Soul" book. In her story, titled "Rattled," Jo relives the day five years ago when she was bitten by a rattlesnake.

"Yes, I did think that it was a possibility that I might die," she said.

Jo was hiking in Mission Trails Park in 2008 when she stepped around a bush and suddenly noticed blood was streaming down her ankle. Her hiking partner called 911 as her entire body began to shut down.

"My lungs started swelling when I was waiting for the helicopter. That's when I was getting pretty worried," she said.

Copter One rushed Jo to Sharp Memorial Hospital, where she asked the emergency room doctor if she was going to die.

"He said 'I don't know yet,'" Jo said.

She was hospitalized for 15 days and gained 60 pounds from the swelling.

"It was at least, from reading my records, 28 vials of antivenin," she said.

Partially paralyzed from the rattlesnake bite, Joe had to teach herself how to walk again.

"The growth in life comes through the hardships," she said.

That's why she figures her story was one of 101 inspiring tales published in the book that teaches people how to turn lemons into lemonade.

"Yeah, that our growth comes from the challenges that we face in life and overcoming those obstacles in order to grow and evolve," Jo said.

Jo says she had to survive for her two sons, and the experience taught her to live life with more compassion and no grudges, because any day could be your last.

"When you go out the door, you never know what the day will bring. There is a chance you might not see your loved ones again," she said.

Although a beautiful necklace reminds her of the attack, Jo is not a snake lover. She still hikes, but these days it's with snake-proof boots.

"There is always a silver lining, don't you think?" she said.

The book was released two weeks ago. It sells for $15.

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