It was a Sunday Night when I started to feel ill, I complained to my Mom about having a sore throat, but the 8th grade science presentation Tuesday made her believe otherwise. Monday came and she made me go to school, all day I was still feeling sick. I went home that day and went to bed feeling really sick. When I woke up Tuesday morning, I new something was wrong. I couldn´t move my neck from side to side, or even touch my chest with it. I usually get migraine headaches, but this one was awful, and the fever of 102º kind of clued me off that I was sick. I slept all day, and by noon, I was getting really bad stomach pains, they progressively got worse, and it got to the point that I couldn´t even sit up. My Mom called 911 and they brought me to the hospital. The doctors did all kinds of tests on me, but everything just came out negative. So the doctor came in, and said to key out everything they would have to do a spinal tap. Now, at that point I was in so much pain, that a spinal tap had to be done. So after calming my worried parents down, the doctor performed the spinal tap. We were relieved to find out it was negative. With all the pain I had, my parents weren´t going to let the doctor tell us it was just a virus. We had the surgeon come in and he said there´s nothing wrong with me. Finally, he called in the Infectious Disease doctor. This doctor had to be our miracle, if it wasn´t for him I wouldn´t be here today. He told me I could stay overnight if it would make me feel better, and I agreed. It was about 12:00 midnight when we got settled into a room in pediatrics. By 4:00 a.m I was in a coma. They had a doctor come in and try to wake me up, because at that point I wasn´t responding. For some reason, He lifted my left leg up, which triggered something, and made me start to thrash around. It took 6 nurses, the doctor, and my uncle to hold me down. By morning they did another spinal tap, and it came back positive, I had Meningococcal Meningitis.
I spent 3 days in the ICU in a coma. By Saturday, I was out of the coma, and they put me in a room in pediatrics. It really started to hit me that I almost died, and how lucky I was to be alive. I got out of the hospital by Tuesday, I still had the IV in my arm when I went home. Thursday morning I broke out into a rash from the medicine, and they had to take the IV out early.
That was a month ago, now I am on the road to recover, I do still have some effects from this. I am losing my hair from the stress of the Meningitis, but it will get better. I do still get back pains from the spinal taps, and at times I´m a bit drifty, and can´t pay attention. I am always told how lucky I am to be alive, and I do cherish life now. I live life one day at a time, and make everyday the best I can, because you never know when it´s going to end!
Denise Ganier, age 14