Meningitis Survivor (7 years old) | California
My name is Ashley Mason, and when I was just seven years old, I had Meningitis. I was living in Anderson, California, at the time. I was in second grade, going to school at Meadow Lane Elementary. One day at school I was sent home, due to a high temperature of 105. My mom took me to the emergency room, where the doctors simply said I had the flu and sent me home. I still had my fever, and when I woke up, wanting to lay with my mom, she told me to get up and walk to her, but I was too weak. She came and picked me up to lay with her. She looked me over to make sure I was okay, and that’s when she saw these marks all over me that looked a lot like bruises. She rushed me back to the emergency room, and the doctor on duty took me from my mother’s arms amd started working on me immediately. He knew exactly what I had. I was put into a drug enduced coma, because I was so small my body was in shock. I was then life flighted to UC Davis Hospital in Sacramento, California.
Shortly after that, I was transferred to Shriners Hospital for Children, where I spent three months learning to walk amd deal with my new condition. I lost four toes on my left foot along with half of my heel. I also had a below the knee amputation on my right leg. I have skin grafts coving my legs, arms and entire back. From then until now, I have still been having surgeries to fix my leg so I can walk without any pain. Just two years ago, I had a twelve hour surgery on my leg, during which a muscle was taken from my back to add more cushion on my leg, so it would be more comfortable to walk. Not only does it still hurt more than ever, at this moment it’s too difficult to walk, too much pain for me to handle. I also have back problems due to the surgery to fix my leg. I am in constant pain and am almost 20 years old. I got sick almost thirteen years ago, and I’m still trying to figure out how to deal with the effects of Meningitis.