Epilepsy: Why Your Health Matters More than Ever – Part 1: My...

Epilepsy: Why Your Health Matters More than Ever – Part 1: My Most Important Seizure

On November 3, 2016, my life changed forever. That day is more meaningful to me than the day I was diagnosed with epilepsy, even more than my first seizure. The seizure I had that day and the events that followed have completely redefined who I am.

This One is Different

That night is a bit strange to me, because I have a couple of very vivid memories, and not much else. I don’t remember, for example, being up all night. I know I was because I found screen shots on my phone from November 3rd at 4am. I was (from what I can gather about those screen shots) looking for things to draw.

What I do remember vividly is my aura. The auras cause my vision to become blurry. They are usually very short, lasting no more than 5 to 10 seconds. They do not always lead to a seizure and sometimes with deep breathing, I can help them to stop. But this one must have lasted for a minute or more. I remember panicking and calling my mom (thank you Siri). I also remember walking into my closet and, for some reason, saying hi to my cat. Maybe it was an effort to calm down.

I called my mom’s cell, which she did not hear. The next day, she could not reach me. This was not unusual, I had a habit of disappearing for hours at the time.

Eleven hours later, after many frantic phone calls, my neighbor found me passed out on my bedroom floor.

A Stroke/Seizure “Event”

I spent the next five days in the hospital, some of that time in the ICU, quite unsure what happened to me. I went through quite a bit of testing, and by November 8th had so many fluids pumped into me I could no longer lift my legs.

I wouldn’t learn for a while that I had a stroke (likely in the hospital), something that took two MRI’s over the course of that visit to uncover. It is still a little unclear to me how the seizure and stroke are related to one another. I simply know that they are. I know that the aftermath was equally as difficult as the event itself and that I never want to experience anything like it ever again