I contracted meningococcal septicaemia on the 27th February 2016 and was admitted to intensive care where my family were told the next 48 hours would tell us whether I would survive or not. I however have no memory of this. I remember being in work the week leading up to this with what I thought was the flu but refused to take time off work because I am a teacher and knew it would be easier to work myself than supply work for another teacher.
On Friday I remember texting my mum asking her to get me an appointment for the doctors that day because I didn't know what to do with myself. I went to doctors that evening to be told it was a bad case of the flu and to go home and rest. I rang my mum to come get me and my car because I didn't feel able to drive.
I don't remember a lot of the next day apart from being sick a lot and at one point getting up to go to the bathroom and collapsing where my right leg gave out and I could no longer move. That's when my parents saw the rash and rang for an ambulance.
I remember small parts of what happened after that but I deteriorated very quickly and just passed out. I woke up in ICU 5 days later at the BRI unable to move my right side at all and with wires everywhere! Everyone who knows me knows how terrified I am of hospitals and needles so I wasn't too happy!
I stayed in ICU for an additional 4 days before being moved to the high dependency stroke ward because I had also suffered 2 strokes on the left side of my brain.
I was discharaged from hospital 5 days later with the early supportive discharge team coming into see me twice a day for the next 3 weeks. The first night home was wonderful, until it came to going to bed and having to climb the stairs... that is an experience I'm not going to forget! My fiancé pushing behind me and helping my raise my right leg whilst my mum held my hands and pulled! It made us all laugh though which is what we needed after everything that had happened.
A year on and I am mostly recovered, I now have to wear glasses because my eye sight deteriorated, the back of my left leg and bum are numb and I suffer 1-2 times a month from migraines which wipe me out for at least 2 days.
However the positives!!
I returned to full time teaching last September, am able to drive again and bought a house with my wonderful fiancé. We are also getting married in October 2017.
I have so much love and thanks for the Bristol Royal Infirmary and the wonderful doctors and nurses in ICU and the stroke ward and my physios for without them I would not be here today or be able to walk again.