3 years ago, during a gap year in New Zealand, I contracted meningitis.
The trip was the biggest adventure of my life so far. I was constantly moving around, to different places, hostels and different living environments. I was unaware of meningitis and the dangers that it can possess.
The pains in my joints came suddenly, within hours, in fact, making it difficult to walk or do any strenuous activity. Living the life of a backpacker, I was not prepared to pay the bill for a trip to the doctors as it was so expensive and I was already living on the breadline. I had gone to work that first day, refusing to take a sick day as I needed the money. I'm a fiercely independent person but at this time all I wanted was to speak to my parents. Given the 11 hour time difference, I managed to get hold of my family and after hearing my symptoms, they begged me to go to the doctors. My friend who I was staying with at the time had to carry me to bed that night, because of the pain, I just couldn’t move. As I progressively got worse I had no choice. Red spots began to appear over my entire body, I was unable to move, the head pains became unbearable, with a high fever, sweats, vomiting, you name it. This was the scariest part as I had no idea what was happening to me, not to mention living thousands of miles away from my family and friends.