Zahrah Ibrahim says she didn’t realize she had been taking her 78-year-old grandmother, Graciela Perlaza, for granted until it was nearly too late.
“I know that when people say, ‘Oh, I love my grandma,’ like, they take for granted that she’s actually here,” the 17-year-old tells CBS in the video below.
It all happened just before a basketball game.
Just as Zahrah was readying to run the scoreboard, she noticed that her family was panicking in the bleachers. That’s where she saw her grandmother lying on the floor unconscious.
“It was really, really scary,” Zahrah recalls.
Zahrah, a competitive swimmer and lifeguard, is thankfully certified in CPR. It appeared that no one else had the same training. However, the teenager was in a panicked state. Her father had to calm her down or her grandmother would be gone forever.
“My dad had to […] tell me, ‘You can’t panic in this kind of situation,’” she says. “He’s like, ‘Do it, do it,’ so then I was like, ‘OK, I’ll do it,’ and I started doing compressions for less than a minute, and then my grandma was like, ‘Ow, stop!’ and she was revived.”
After the compressions, her grandmother was breathing and astoundingly alert. While doctors still don’t know what caused the collapse, one thing is for sure: Zahrah will never take her grandma for granted again.
“I literally just grabbed her hand and just sat there,” she says. “You never know. If I wasn’t certified or no one else was certified, I don’t know if she’d be here. So I don’t take it for granted.”
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