Not many people get the chance to take a ride on our epilepsy roller coaster. This epilepsy roller coaster tests us both mentally and physically on a daily basis. It provides us with the strength we need to inspire others around us. While everyone may have different ways to go about living with their epilepsy, these are a few keys I believe everyone should keep in mind.
1. Family & Friends
There have been very rough times throughout my epilepsy journey that I wouldn’t have been able to get through without the help from family and friends. My parents have been there for me through routine doctor appointments to the two-week hospital stay. My friends have been amazing! From forcing me to stay in their dorm rooms because they were worried about me staying in my room myself to caring for me at work, I couldn’t be more grateful. This is a great example that you’re not alone when riding the epilepsy roller coaster.
Throughout my epilepsy journey, I’ve learned that patience is truly a virtue. It takes time to find that amazing doctor and hospital that you can put your trust in. Treatments and medicine changes DO NOT happen overnight. My medicine has been a trial and error for years and I finally have the right dosage. With technology advancing every day, treatments can only get better for me and the rest of the epilepsy community. It all takes time, and I’ve learned that as time progresses, things will find a way to get better.
3. Tell Your Story
It wasn’t until college when I figured this out but telling my epilepsy story was absolutely amazing. Once I told my friends about my epilepsy background, the responses were unreal. They wanted to learn more about epilepsy in general and how they could help me if something happened. This provided me with a sense of comfort both in the classroom and hanging out on the weekends. Without telling my epilepsy story in college, I wouldn’t be where I am today. It opened many doors and allowed me to gain a sense of comfort everywhere I go.
4. Be Yourself
Throughout my 16 years of having epilepsy, I’ve learned that you just need to be yourself. Prove people wrong, live life the way you want to, and just have fun. You can find me on the golf course, on the jetski, or at the hockey game to just name a few things I absolutely love. There are days when I push myself to the limit and days when I just take a step back to relax. I was raised to challenge myself in everything I do. Sometimes I might take that a little too far at the lake, but I’m just enjoying my life!
Our epilepsy roller coaster ride is long and stressful, but everyone can take it on head on. Your family and friends will always be there for support. Please remember that nothing happens overnight. Everything takes time, especially with treatment for us. Finally, just be yourself and go tell your epilepsy story!