An Orangeville, Ont., woman who lost her arm in a shark attack in Mexico recalls grabbing and pushing at the creature as the water filled with her blood.
Nicole Moore, 38, was bitten while wading in waist-deep water during a Cancun vacation with a group of friends on Jan. 31. The attack on Moore, who spoke to reporters for the first time on Wednesday, left her with serious injuries to her leg and doctors had to amputate one of her arms.
"I just remember the water filling with my own blood," she said. "It was just completely a sea of red."
The attack happened when Moore went into the ocean to wash sand off her feet after playing volleyball. She was waist deep when she felt the shark bite into her arm.
"It was a sensation I'll never forget," she said. "My first reaction was just to grab that shark and push it while I pulled my arm away to get free."
Moore managed to break free from the shark's grip and scramble back to shore, but was badly injured and had to spend six days in a Mexico hospital before being transferred to Sunnybrook hospital in Toronto.
As a registered nurse, she knows she's facing a long recovery, and will need several more surgeries just to be able to walk again.
"I have moments when I'm not optimistic and I do break down and I do cry," she said. "But never do I feel like 'Why me?' and 'Poor me.' Fortunately, so far, it has been a positive thing."
Moore is sharing the story of her struggle on a blog she's started called Mooretolife.ca. In one post, she describes how she told her young daughters how her arm was too broken and that doctors had to remove it.
"Kids are amazing," Moore wrote. "Especially mine."
Originally intended as a way to update friends and family about her recovery, her blog now has hundreds of comments from around the world.
"I never intended to share my story worldwide," said Moore. "It is overwhelming, but I feel then if that's the response that has occurred, I have to try to answer to that and try to keep up with that."
Moore hopes to be home by April 12.
"It's my birthday," said Moore. "I'll be home for my birthday."