I was immediately started on a cocktail of antibiotics, fluids, and pain medication to begin fighting the infection. I remained in the hospital for 11 days, and remained on IV antibiotics for three weeks after my release. I am so blessed and lucky to not have serious, debilitating after effects. But as a result of the meningitis, I suffered a slight paralysis of the jawbone and tongue, which has gotten progessively better over time. I also suffered complications with my gallbladder and had to have it removed as well. To this day, I also suffer from episodic cluster headaches, which too, over time, have gotten better.
I am so thankful that we were able to catch the infection as early as we did. I cannot stress the importance of proper vaccination and boosters – the shot was not mandatory when I entered college, and I was not protected. I realise that until it happened to me, I thought that meningitis was something that "other people got" and I never thought it would happen to me. I went through a variety of emotions – shock, anger that it had happened and was changing my life, hopelessness because I never thought I'd get better, and gratefulness once I realised I was turning a corner.