"The scary thing is that nothing protects anyone from getting meningitis again, so always remain cautious and go with your gut instinct if you feel that things are not right!"
“I was around two and a half, I had gone to a play group in the morning but during the afternoon I became lethargic with a high temperature and had flu-like symptoms.
"My Dad was working on his best man's speech for an upcoming wedding but could tell something was up.
“Mum took me to the local GP around four o’clock who said it was probably the summer heat or a virus. They advised to keep me cool and give me Calpol for my temperature.
“During the early evening, I became less and less active and there was a visible rash. My parents weren't happy with my condition so they called the GP for a home visit. The GP looked at the rash with a magnifying glass but still felt it likely I had a virus and instructed my parents to try and keep my temperature down and see how I was in the morning.
I was quite unresponsive
“My parents kept bathing me to cool me down and put me to bed around 11pm, taking turns to sleep at my side in case I needed anything. During the early hours Mum researched the medical books we held (pre-Google!) and was concerned I could have meningitis.
“Around 5am, Mum went to check on me and was shocked at the deterioration. I was lying next to Dad but had a grey look, my eyes had become sunken and I was quite unresponsive.
“The emergency GP came out and he immediately gave me an antibiotic injection and instructed my parents to take me straight to the hospital where the senior paediatrician would be waiting. The GP stayed with my younger sister, Rebecca, who was only a year old at the time and asleep in the next room. The GP had not seen a case of meningitis for over nine years, but it was the top of his diagnosis list.
“Mum sat in the back seat of the car with me, Dad was insistent that she kept me conscious so Mum kept talking to me all the way. Dad dropped us at the main entrance to park the car and Mum ran with me in her arms shouting for instructions through the corridors to find the children’s ward, where the paediatrician was thankfully waiting.
99% sure it was meningitis
“The paediatrician gave my parents the news that he was 99% sure it was meningitis, and that the rash was septicaemia. He gave me a 50/50 chance of surviving the next 24 hours as I had already had the rash for over ten hours by that time.
“My parents say, ‘Either one of us would have given our life for yours on that morning…it was devastating for us’
“However, I'm a fighter, and fight I did! I gradually responded to the treatment, miraculously with no long-term side effects, although I was in hospital for around 2 weeks and took some months to regain my strength.
Trust your gut
“All the family was tested with swab tests to see if they were carriers, but were not, so we never knew where I picked it up from.
“Since then my parents have both fundraised for Meningitis Now by completing the London Marathon - I'm very proud! The scary thing is that nothing protects anyone from getting meningitis again, so always remain cautious and go with your gut instinct if you feel that things are not right!
Now an adult, Amie fundraised for Meningitis Now by taking part in our challenge to walk 8,000 steps a day in January. While there are some easier days than others Amie has determinedly completed the challenge, raising funds that will help support people impacted by meningitis. Amie says,
“It’s been overall great! Some days it's been really tough to get up off the couch and venture out into a cold and dark January, but having the challenge has kept me motivated. As well as raising money, I've felt so much better in myself for doing it. I've been blown away by everyone who has sponsored me, especially in January which is always a tough month, so I feel very grateful to have amazing friends and family. Looking forward to the next fundraising opportunity!”