Epilepsy Will NOT Defeat Me

2013 started out to be quite stressful. January 8, one of my godmother’s left this earth, the day right before my 27th birthday. That not only tore me apart but I later realized it sparked something inside of me. Life is short, no one knows the day nor hour God will call us home. It was time for me to stop existing in this world and start living my life for me. I went into action, getting my life together personally and financially. Finally figuring out who Whitney was and what I wanted out of life. Then my world started to seem strange. I noticed staring spells were more frequent than usual, headaches, something just was not right with me. I told my mom about these changes and she constantly said “Whitney call the doctor this could be seizures again.” The spells would happen at the most random times. What scared me the most was, It would happen while driving. I could remember being at a red light and the next moment being at my apartment. Imagine losing 5 minutes not knowing what happened in that time frame. I did not harm myself or others but it was still dangerous.

I was in denial. Didn’t want to accept the fact this would come back into my adult life. But I listened and made an appointment. Yes, mothers are usually 99.789% right. My neurologist reviewed my history of epilepsy, the fact that I had seizures my entire childhood since I was 2 weeks old. I was placed on 2000mg of Keppra (a strong seizure medication). He then ordered me “NO DRIVING.” That was not possible. My family is so far away but just like any other mother that would do anything for their child, my mom dropped everything and came to Texas. She HATES driving but took me everywhere I needed to go until the doc said it was ok to drive again. Just no road trips or joy rides.

It wasn’t over. I was still having seizures. A lot of them. I started a second medication. Now here I am on Keppra and Topamax. 2100mg a day. Not only are the seizures taking over but the side effects as well. My hair was falling out, I was sleeping 12 hours a day, horrible mood swings, my vision was horrible at night, my taste buds were messed up and bad tingling in my finger tips. I reached a point where I cried myself to sleep. “God why? Why am I going through this again?”

In May, on a trip to New Orleans, I was spending some time with my nieces and friends. A friend asked “Who do you girls want to be like?” and they responded “I want to be like Whitney when I grow up.” THAT was a turning point. I could not let them see me defeated. I could not give up on myself. I decided silence was not an option. Research began as soon as I got to back to Texas. I saw all of these groups and websites for people living with epilepsy. There’s tons of movements and things going on for people just like me. I wondered, if this is such a major issue why aren’t more people involved? Why don’t more people know about this? 65 MILLION PEOPLE WORLDWIDE LIVE WITH EPILEPSY!! This is not okay! November is epilepsy Awareness Month, the color is purple. Help us spread the word.

God gave me a gift of helping others and He’s guiding me to where He wants me. Doors are being opened for me. I’m going to advocate and raise awareness! I will fight for what I believe in because we NEED a cure. I am here for anyone who needs support or just want to learn more. I hope my posts can teach more on a personal level. Doctor terms are overwhelming, trust me I KNOW!

Lets get social! follow Changing Focus: Epilepsy Edition on Twitter for daily updates @CfEpilepsy

With Love,
Whit

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