I am 28 years old living with epilepsy. I got my first seizure while I was volunteering at a recreation center, I was so scared. I had never experienced anything like it. I was diagnosed when I was 13 years old and since then I have experienced many more. But I promised myself after receiving this diagnosis that I would not let it slow me down in life. Today, here I am a newlywed and with a new baby. Although it was such a high risk pregnancy and I had a few complications, I gave birth to a beautiful healthy baby boy. I have very strong faith in God and I believe that he never makes mistakes. I believe that this condition was given to me for a purpose. I’ve continued to go to school to accomplish my dreams in becoming a registered nurse. I have vowed to myself that I would be an advocate for others that live with this condition. I would use my education in nursing to help make a difference in the lives of others. If i could inspire at least one person to never allow this condition to control any aspect of their life, then I would have accomplished my goal. I refuse to let this diagnosis keep me from living my life! I continue to stay determined to accomplish my dreams and continue to push forward in living a healthy “normal” life. I am an Epilepsy warrior!!!

I am most thankful for my family. It doesn’t matter when I have a seizure or where I have a seizure, they respond instantly. They rush to the scene and when I awake from my episode, they are there to comfort me. I work as a home health nurse and my job is based on driving from patient to patient. My family members take turns and clears their schedules just to make sure I get around as I need to when I can’t drive because of the driving restrictions after a seizure. My husband is always making sure that I take my medication as scheduled. He takes on the night time feedings for our newborn, so that I won’t get sleep deprived. They all take such good care of me and it has become a tradition for us to all attend the Stroll for Epilepsy and we are proud supporters of the Epilepsy Foundation.

A big lesson that I hope someone can learn from my life is they should not allow epilepsy to stop them from doing what they love. To never give up on what you want in life just because of a condition. It might be a little more challenging, but it is not impossible. I graduated as an LVN (Licensed Vocational Nurse) in 2015 and just recently went back to school to transition from LVN to RN. I am proud to say that I will be graduating with my RN (Registered Nurse) this December! We do not need to let our seizures stop us from doing anything in this life…. it is just a tiny rock in the road but we cannot let it stop us from walking down the path we choose.

Graciela Vasquez, LVN