From The Story of My Life, how did Helen become blind?

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The Story of My Life is Helen Keller's autobiographical account of the first twenty-two years of her life. Realising that she is privileged compared to other blind and deaf children and that she receives countless opportunities that others like her do not, Helen wants to share her story in the hope of inspiring others and as a token of appreciation to all the role players in her success.

Helen, in her own words is much like any other young child and reminds the reader that "I came, I saw, I conquered."(ch 1) However, in the February of the year when she turns 2 she is struck by a mysterious illness  "which closed my eyes and ears and plunged me into the unconsciousness of a new-born baby."(ch1) So from the age of nineteen months she is left blind and deaf. According to doctors, she was not expected to live through this "acute congestion of the stomach and brain" (ch 1) and it is only after her fever subsides and she begins to make a recovery that her blindness and deafness is noticed. 

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