Living with Epilepsy Essay

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The first time I experienced a seizure I was 15 years old. It was supposed to be one of the most exciting days in a teenager’s young life, the day I got my learners license. My dad woke me up very early that morning so we would be one of the first people in line at the DMV. However when we finally got there after the half hour drive there was already a long line. I remember experiencing one of the worst headaches of my life while standing in the line that stretched well outside the building, but I just figured it was because of the lack of sleep from the night before and the growing nervousness I was having about taking my written test. Before I knew it, I am waking up groggily in a brightly lit small room with a lady standing over me. Not knowing where I am, I begin to panic wanting to get out of the bed and find my dad. Suddenly I hear a familiar voice. I look up and see my dad at my side with tears in his eyes. I had never seen my dad cry in my whole 15 years, he is a manly man who does not show emotion easily. Scared and confused I asked him where I was. He tells me that I had a seizure and we are in the emergency room. I remember laying in the bed so dumbfounded. At the time I was not even sure what a seizure was exactly, all I knew is that I had just had one and I had never felt so physically or emotionally drained in my life.
Now let’s fast forward to a few months later. It was a Friday and I was going home with one of my friends after school to spend the night. It was her cousins 17th birthday so we all went out to a popular restaurant to celebrate. While at dinner with my friend and basically her entire family, it happened again, I had my second seizure. This time while at the emergency room the doctor referred me to a neurologist. A few weeks later my mom had taken me to the neurologist, and that’s when he told me I had epilepsy, specifically the type known as grand mal. I remember having a million thoughts rush through my mind. Would my peers think I strange, would boys want to date the girl with epilepsy, would I one day be able to have children, will I die? My doctor explained to me that plenty of people go on with this brain condition to live long normal lives, and many women are able to have children. Then my mother asked him what the cause of my epilepsy was. He told us that after the many test he had performed on me he was unsure. He explained that it is common for a person to never know why they suffer from the condition. It’s hard enough to be a teenage girl as it is, and then you add epilepsy into the mix, I felt so alone. Then my doctor told me something I will never forget. He said, “Jessica you are far from being alone, in fact 1 in 26 people in the United States have epilepsy and most are adolescents”. With those words I did not feel as alone anymore.
I went three years without having a seizure thanks to the medication my doctor had me on. Then one day out of the blue when I was eighteen it happened again. Ironically...

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