The Epilepsy Foundation of Michigan first met Cassandra Emerson through the Studio E Art Therapy program, during which her frustration with epilepsy, along with her boundless creativity, became apparent to everyone she met. She also attended our Wellness & Epilepsy Conference and was one of the first enrollees in our six-month PROGRESS Toward Wellness self-management program.
After participating in this program, Cassandra reported improvements in quality of life, social and emotional well-being, memory, stress, physical symptoms, body mass index, confidence, knowledge, and self-management skills.
One of the biggest changes was getting her back on a stage performing. She had stopped doing open mics because of feeling embarrassed about her memory and out of fear of having a seizure. At our first Celebrating Abilities event, she inspired the audience with two poems and an original song called “Don’t Count Me Out.” Cassandra is a true success story and a strong advocate for people with epilepsy.Submitted by Russell A. Derry, MPH, director of education at the Epilepsy Foundation of Michigan