Naomi Bailie returns home after meningitis battle

February 20, 2017

Sinn Féin councillor Naomi Bailie has returned home to her family after spending over two months in hospital fighting meningitis.

The former Newry Mourne and Down District Chairperson was left critically ill and in a coma for five weeks after being struck with meningitis in early December.  The 31 year old collapsed at her home and was placed in an induced coma before undergoing six rounds of surgery in her battle against the deadly bacterial infection.

The mum-of-one recalls wakening on the morning of December 7th “with a crushing headache.” As she suffers from migraines, Naomi took a tablet believing it would relieve the pain. She rang her husband, who she says arrived home to find her “crawling on the floor in pain”.

“I have no memory of my journey to hospital, but have been told I was completely disorientated and would not obey paramedics who had to lift me out of the car. I am sure it was terrifying to see,” Ms Bailie added.

Her concerned family had appealed for prayers as she underwent a series of operations.

“There were times when my family were advised to take things one day at a time,” revealed the Sinn Fein Councillor.

“After my first operation I had a type of stroke associated with surgery, I could not move my left-hand side and the likelihood of brain damage was raised.”

Ms Bailie also revealed that doctors discovered a benign brain tumour which had to be removed once she was well enough.  The married mother of a baby daughter paid tribute to her family who she said were with her the whole time – “for them it was awful,” she added.

“It has been a rough ride. Now it is about getting back to normal. If I can do that, I will be flying.”