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The Importance of Telling Your Epilepsy Story

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It was a typical summer school day: kids sitting in the classroom wishing they could be outside! After raising my hand to be excused from the classroom, I started walking down the hallway when my first seizure happened. In matter of minutes, my life would change forever.

After waking up in the ambulance, I knew something bad just happened. My teacher was in the ambulance with me, giving me a little sense of comfort until I knew exactly what happened. When I got to the hospital, both my parents and some faculty were there. Obviously my parents would be with me or any of my siblings if we went to the hospital, but when I saw faculty there, I knew something different was up. It was time for the fun part — the medical tests!

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Going back to my room after my tests, it was pretty clear I had a seizure. Even a third grader could figure that out. What I didn’t see coming was the potential for more. My parents raised me to never back down, so despite having a seizure I went to school the next day.

The last day of school was finally here and we were ecstatic! There was one issue; something didn’t feel right throughout the day for me. I finally made my way to the nurse’s office with a friend, and before I knew it a seizure happened again. This seizure officially diagnosed me with epilepsy.

Going years seizure free was great! However, in high school they returned. The biggest thing I learned when they returned in high school was to tell people I have them. I didn’t do so much in high school
and I regret it. In college, I made sure my closest friends knew about my epilepsy, and the responses were amazing. My friends were always there for me when I had a little (or big) episode whether on campus or out downtown. They also started spreading the information about my seizures to other people to help make me feel more comfortable. If I didn’t bring up my epilepsy to my friends in college, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

What you witnessed here was someone telling their story about their epilepsy. I most likely gained a ton of respect doing this, and I believe you will too if you share your story. Please let your friends know about your background; it’s the best thing I’ve ever done.

Getty image by Drnn.

Originally published: April 24, 2018
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