Thursday, November 06, 2008

 November is National Epilepsy Awareness Month.  As someone who's had epilepsy since she was 8 and who has a son with epilepsy, I just want people to be aware of what it is and not be so afraid of it. I remember being embarrassed when I had a seizure at school and hearing people talk about it behind my back. When my son had a seizure at school, his experience was entirely different because he was lucky enough to have a teacher whose father has epilepsy. She was able to explain to my son's class what had happened and to make them understand that my son was no different because of this. People with epilepsy don't have demons inside them and we can do pretty much what we want. I was raised to not allow this condition to put limitations on me and I've raised my son the same way. I know seizures can look scary but they don't hurt. If you're curious about what epilepsy is, check out the Epilepsy Foundation's site.

4 comments:

Marshamlow said...

My older brother has epilepsy too, small world. Due to his epilepsy he was considered to be retarded as a young child. Isn't that weird? He is four years older than me and when he was taken away from our biological parents for neglect, he was placed in a foster home for retarded children. Later when I was also removed from the home my foster parents adopted both of us. He had spent 5 years in those homes and it really effected his self esteem and his perspective of himself. He is very smart and I just can't understand how he could be percieved as a mentally challenged child for so many years. Especially since taking medicine completely controls his seizures. We have come a long way.

Whenever someone says something about, how many kids have allergies, adhd, epilepsy, etc nowdays and not when they were kids. I always think of my brother and think, that's because no one knew anything, not that they didn't exist. Sorry for the rant. Hope you are staying dry, the rain is coming.

Katya said...

I'm off today so I'm in the house and dry.

I was very very lucky to have my parents -- I realize that every time I hear a story like your brother's. Taking medicine completely controls mine too -- when I meet somebody and somehow the topic comes up, sometimes they'll say, "Oh I didn't know you had epilepsy." And from some people that sounds like I should somehow look like I have it!

nutmeg said...

Yes - very glad we have moved on from some of the very old-fashioned notions about many things - including epilepsy. Openness is the key to understanding - thanks for the link Katya.

Katya said...

Me too -- you know I was shocked by the attitudes when I was a teenager. For instance I had a boyfriend whose mother made him quit seeing me after I had a seizure at their house. My parents must have protected me from this type of thing when I was a kid.