(WSVN) - It was Emma Eggler’s first day of college when a normal walk to class became shockingly nerve-wracking after she was struck by lightning.

“A lot of doctors told me I should buy a lottery ticket because I was lucky,” said Eggler.

The 18-year-old Alabama native was about to attend her primary class at the University of West Florida (UWF) as a freshman, Monday.

Before she knew it, a bolt of electricity entered her chest. The next thing she noticed was her body collapsed on the sidewalk, as she came to her senses on the concrete pavement after the lightning struck.

“I did not feel anything, at all really,” recalled Eggler. “I just woke up on the ground.”

Her shirt was torn in half, along with parts of the fabric melted and warped together.

“My shirt was like completely open, because of the lightning strike it melted to me,” said Eggler.

The shockwave traveled to the left side of her body which exploded her watch and burned her wrist. The electric energy reached her foot, which burned a hole in her sock and sneaker.

“I was able to get my backpack off me,” Eggler remembered, “but I could not feel my legs at all, and I was scared I was paralyzed, and I was really panicking.”

Nelson Libbert, a UWF senior, and other students witnessed the entire ordeal; they all managed to help Eggler and perched her on a bench before they called 911.

Eggler was calmed down by Libbert’s supportive words.

“I would be freaking out over this, but you, you’re so strong, you’re a strong freshman,” Libbert spoke these words to Eggler. “I know this is a tough first day, but believe it or not, but you’re going to make it through this.”

Eggler was taken to Pensacola Hospital and then transferred to the University of Alabama Hospital in Birmingham.

Doctors told Eggler’s parents that she was lucky the bolt did not stop her heart.

“We definitely feel like God performed a miracle for her,” said Eggler’s mother, Erin Eggler. “That is the only explanation for why she is still with us.”

The freshman college student has since been released from the hospital. She has regained movement in her legs and is expected to attend class next week.

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