my brother David

It is 13 years since I lost my brother David to Meningitis.

We were a close family and I was sixteen at the time. He was a fun and kind – hearted boy, who was into all the right things. He was sporty and that night we had been watching him play in his hockey game. Later that night he complained of cold symptoms- sniffly nose, stiff joints, etc. I crashed in his room and he was up being a bit sick in the night. The next day he still seemed ok- my mum and dad phoned the doctor and they said just to give him paracetemal and monitor him. At 11 o clock the rash appeared and we rushed him up to the hospital which was two minutes from our house. From then on it was like a scene from ER, he was hooked up to all sorts of machinery. A few hours later he was dead.

I could not believe that my little brother was gone. We were close, I mean we fought sometimes as brothers and sisters do but it didn’t change the fact that I loved him. We had so many fun times together.

I was in shock for many years. Still expecting him to walk through the door or see him walking to school with his friends. Those were my darkest days. I tried to keep going and threw myself into work and tried to keep busy and block it out. It was the only way I knew how to get by.

I have accepted it now, but I often wonder what he would be like now or how things would be different if he was here today.

Two years later my mum passed away- she never ever got over losing my brother and I felt like we lost her as well on this day.

Now 13 years on I have an amazing family of my own. My husband is fantastic and I have an amazing two year old boy and I thank my lucky stars for him every day. My dad is fantastic too. He has fundraised thousands of pounds for Meningitis in memory of my brother.This is his way of fighting back against the disease. Although the grief and sadness will never leave me I feel very lucky with what I have. Being a mum myself now I cannot bear to think what my mum and dad went through.

Meningitis is an awful disease that strikes with no warning. Nothing could have ever prepared me for this. My advice to anyone in a similar situation is always trust your instincts - if you think something is wrong don’t delay, get it checked out.

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  • Hiya, Just read your post and made me feel very moved indeed. Its a very very vile and cruel disease and 2 years after my daughter had it i sill question myself....why did i not know she was seriously ill until so late but up until that point it seemed like she just had a virus. Your dad is very brave to raise that money as it helps families like us....my daughter had all 4 limbs amputated under the joints. But we feel very lucky and happy and positive as we still have her and her damage was to the limbs not her brain. Take Care and keep remembering David xxx

  • Thanks so much for being brave enough to share your experience of loss of your brother David.Although,all of us who have been "touched" by this horrid disease already know how cruel and sudden it can be,it brings tears to my eyes to hear of those who tragically die.

    Your advice is so true and it is also my advice,having been misdiagnosed at hospital and sent home with every sign of meningitis and septicaemia.I would also say to be assertive and not take no for an answer or to keep getting back if things get worse.I begged the young doctor to observe me longer,but he didnt listen to what I said and sent me home feeling like I had made a big fuss over the flu !Lots of us question why we didnt realise the seriousness of the illness but even doctors get it wrong! Thats why the Meningitis Trusts symptoms cards ,website,helpline can be such a lifesaver.I now distribute the cards to local GP,Schools,nurseries,guides,scouts and freiends and family.You never know when this will save a life or get a loved one to hospital sooner rather than later.

    Jenny also - I am sure that the ust has been a great support to you your daughter.

    This post comes just before I plan to do a craft fayre(selling cards) to fundraise for Meningitis Trust.It makes me realise how much work needs to be done to raise awareness and also the wide ranging support that will always be needed as result of this horrid disease.e are so lucky to have the Meningitis Trust and also so many wonderful volunteers who make this possible,even in their own difficult circumstances.

  • you are a very brave person to put your feelings on the site but i feel your brave actions will help others, i know they will be looking down on you and feeling so very proud of you. again thank you for sharing, have a good xmas

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