“On 10th of June, Keivagh woke up with a rash - not the typical 'meningitis rash', just what looked like maybe a viral rash.
She had a temperature of 38.2, which I'd normally treat with Calpol and check again in half an hour, but there was something not right.
“I called 111 and they advised me to take her to the out of hours GP. So while myself and my mum took Keivagh down, my partner took our other children to the park - I suspected he thought I may be overreacting about the rash.
“The GP wasn't happy to let Keivagh go home and asked us to take her to A&E which we did, and within a couple of hours she was being treated with a broad spectrum antibiotic. They had difficulty getting a cannula into her, so they had to give it to her via injection. Keivagh went rapidly downhill and we were transferred over to University Hospital Coventry, where we would reside until she was better.
“A lumbar puncture followed shortly after our arrival and despite reassurances that it was viral, the consultant came in to deliver the blow that Keivagh had a bacterial strain of meningitis. Our world as it was, stopped.
“I couldn't believe that this had come from a temperature - I knew something wasn't right but this? Keivagh continued to get worse and worse and her temperature was uncontrollable. We couldn't touch her because she was so hot; she lay there like a corpse.
“In the same time she got worse she started to perk up, smiles came over her face and she started to roll over again. Her cannula was fitted in her head and she began to touch it and cause trouble with her feeding tube - namely pulling it out.
“After two weeks we noticed our baby was coming back to us. Sitting in that side room, the same four walls, microwave meals, it was difficult - but she fought meningitis, so we could fight anything. At Keivagh’s hearing test we were told she had unilateral hearing loss, but further testing concluded no damage to her ears.
“Keivagh is a picture of health now at eight months old. She is happy and smiley and we are prepared for any more after effects from this, because we've got her here. We have done a toddle waddle and a mountain climb and aim to raise £1000 for meningitis now. We are currently at approximately 75% of our target.
“I want parents to know it's ok not to be ok afterwards. I am now suffering with PTSD as a result of Keivagh being poorly. Even though she's now well I am struggling to comprehend quite how bad things were, but that's ok. She's mended and now I'll mend myself.”