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Epilepsy Letter # 5

Age-standardised disability-adjusted life year...
Dear Stacey,

I am twenty-nine years old. I have had seizures for almost ten years now. My general experience with epilepsy has been interesting. When I first had the seizures, my family was completely shocked, including my grandmother who has since passed away. Nobody ever knew what caused me to have the seizures and they still do not know. There were tons of tests done and nothing came out of it. My experience with epilepsy was a painful one. My seizures came about very suddenly. At first, the neurologist put me on Dilantin. Bad move. Why? Because it caused my gums to swell like balloons. That required some surgery. Everyone in my family thought I would die of these seizures. After each one, I had become very light headed for a brief period.

When I was working, my co-workers were supportive of me. The same holds true for both my family and friends. My grandmother was alive at the time that I had the first seizures. She was supportive of me. She even came to the hospital to see how I was doing. She was like that until about two months before she passed away. This was three years ago. After that, her health failed rapidly. Any time I did not feel too good after having the seizures, all I had to do was call her. She would make me feel much stronger. I feel that living with epilepsy is easy!! With the combination of both my family and friends, and the fact that I take my medication religiously on time every day, my life is extremely easy! My family and friends continue to support me while I have epilepsy. You definitely have to think positively and forget the past! Think about your future!

I like bike riding, miniature golf, walking and flea markets, garage sales, archery and of course, shopping! I also collect Sylvester the cat stuff. My collection is big and it continues to grow. I am a 70’s music fan, and love music from the 80’s and 90’s as well. I am also an Elvis fan, a Beatles fan, and a U2 fanatic.

I think this young woman used support from her family and friends to help her gain a sense of inner strength. She did not fall into depression because she focused on her goals and interests. She also looked at life positively by not focusing on her past. She focused on the good things in her future.

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