Jay Aston wept as she described how her daughter Josie had been diagnosed with bacterial meningitis and had been hospitalised.
The 60-year-old, who won the Eurovision Song Contest in 1981 with pop group Bucks Fizz, told ITV’s Loose Women that her 18-year-old began to exhibit what she thought were flu-like symptoms and was later placed in an induced coma.
Josie is now awake and in the hospital, but she is expected to return home soon, according to her.
“What Josie wants is for others to know about what happened to her,” Aston explained. She appeared to be in excellent health, the healthiest I’ve ever seen her.
“She was on a fitness kick and looked amazing, and then we almost lost her overnight.”
Josie had contacted Aston and asked her to come home because she was sick, according to Aston, who has performed with Mike Nolan and Cheryl Baker in The Fizz, a spin-off of the original group.
“When I returned, she was sunbathing.” So, I figured she might be suffering from heatstroke, so she crawled into my bed and didn’t seem to be herself,” she remembered.
Josie had a high temperature that continued rising, as well as “an aching neck, joint ache, and I thought maybe she had flu,” according to Aston.
“She’d been complaining about her joints hurting for a few days, but she’s merely grown again.” ‘Oh, it’s only growing pains,’ I reason. However, it was not the case.”
An ambulance was dispatched as her symptoms deteriorated and she dialled 111, but Aston claims it never arrived, and hours later, around “three o’clock in the morning, she’s like, ‘Mom, I’m not right.’ ‘I’m not quite right,’ says the narrator.
“Fortunately, she stayed in my bed, which allowed me to keep an eye on her. If she’d slept in her own bed, things would have been different. “I don’t think I’d be able to have a child.”
“I switched on all the lights and said, ‘Let’s take a look at you.’
“Because, strangely enough, my husband (Dave Colquhoun) had meningitis 19 years ago, and she was my silver lining in almost losing my husband.”
“So I knew what to look for — a rash on their arms with four small brown dots.” I realised what it was at that point… It looked exactly like my husband’s sickness, so I knew it was meningitis.”
“Within 20 minutes, she saw a doctor, she was on a drip, and they were treating her for bacterial meningitis,” she added, adding that “within one hour, she was covered in the rash, literally everywhere.”
“They’d already given us the 50/50 and they said we need to put her in a coma,” Aston remembered, adding that Josie’s organs were dying a day and a half later.
“She was in a coma for five days, but they only ceased anaesthetizing her after three days, and she never woke up.”
“She told me, ‘Mummy, I’ll be awake on Mother’s Day,’ knowing how much that meant to me. She didn’t wake up on Mother’s Day, but two days later…”
Josie’s “kidneys had failed for a few weeks but they are starting to work,” she says, and she expects she’ll be home in a few days.
Josie was sent to King’s College Hospital’s specialised kidney unit, according to the Daily Mirror.
Meningitis is a viral or bacterial infection of the protective membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord, known as the meninges.
Viral meningitis is the least deadly but most frequent form of the condition, and it usually goes away on its own, whereas bacterial meningitis is more uncommon and requires immediate medical attention.
A high temperature, being unwell, a headache, and a rash that does not diminish “when a glass is rolled over it,” according to the NHS website, are all signs of meningitis that can appear abruptly. However, a rash does not always appear.
Stiff neck, aversion to bright lights, tiredness or unresponsiveness, and seizures (fits) are all possible symptoms, according to the NHS.