I was diagnosed with epilepsy at age 13. Being in middle school and finally getting the diagnosis was a lot to handle. Not only did I now have epilepsy, but I had severe anxiety and even depression from wondering when my next seizure would occur. I was also worried about other kids making fun of me.
Most of my challenges were associated with my own mental and physical health. I worked on getting help for depression and anxiety and taking anti-seizure medication. I refrained from saying yes to many things and learned to say no to many things as well. I didn’t have a normal or typical childhood, but I learned to accept and be excited about what I did have. I learned being different can be pretty darn cool.
It’s been 12 years since I had a seizure, and today, I am the proud mom of an amazing 1-year-old. Becoming seizure-free was the ultimate dream for me. My neurologist found that my brain no longer shows abnormalities, so I will begin tapering off my medication. This always seemed like a dream and something I never assumed or thought would truly be happening in my life. Yet here I am, and I work so hard to get everything under control.
My advice to others on their epilepsy journey is to take it one day at a time. That is easier said than done, of course, but if I look back on my journey, I realize I only did it by taking things one step, one day at a time. You can do it and be in charge of your destiny.