Embarrassed or Embracing Epilepsy?
Last updated: September 2023
Am I embarrassed by epilepsy? I will answer that in a short while.
Memories of my first seizures
I was 10 when I had my first epilepsy seizure. I didn't like it. I remember my dad was driving and suddenly I was having a grand mal seizure. I was screaming and the whole situation was intense. We were going to our cousin's house. Upon getting there, I had my second seizure in their house.
I looked horrible. My parents were super stressed as they were clueless about what to do. I was just 10 years old and I was so embarrassed to be sick in front of my cousins. Well, that was a childhood memory.
Embarassed of my epilepsy as a teen
How about as a teenager? Was I still embarrassed by my epilepsy? Yes, I was.
One time as a teenager, I was super stressed because of a final exam. I didn't take care of my body and I forgot to take my medication. My teacher gave me the test and I was ready to take it. But I got a seizure in my class and I fell to the ground.
That was it. When I opened my eyes, I was laid on a table and my parents were beside me. I was a 16 years old and all of my friends knew I had epilepsy. I had never told anyone in my high school about it, but now everyone knew. Great.
I didn't go to school for a week. I wanted to change schools but I couldn't. I was crying because I was embarrassed of my illness. Thank God my friends were not bullying me.
Getting over being embarrassed of seizures
Then I entered my time as a university student. It was my final exam week and I was constantly stressed. I fell in the exam hall and had a seizure. Again, that's all I remember.
But this time I was not embarrassed about my epilepsy because I have accepted myself. My friends were very supportive and they know what to do if I have a grand mal seizure. I'm so grateful for my friends.
I now realized that stress was a major seizure trigger for me. I was thought of ways to be healthy and be happy no matter what, and I made new choices to cope with and reduce my stress. I was amazed because I didn't get seizures as much when I was able to relax.
Accepting my epilepsy and myself
I used to wonder why I was embarrassed by having seizures in public. It's because I'm afraid of their judgment. What if they don't like me? What if they don't talk to me?
But none of those questions matter once I accepted myself. It doesn't matter what they think about me. What matters is what I think about me. It took me a long time to accept myself with epilepsy. Now I embrace my epilepsy and am not embarrassed about it anymore. We are humans, some are born with errors and it's so beautiful.
Are you embarrassed or embracing your epilepsy? Let me know your story! I would love to read your story too.
Since being diagnosed with epilepsy, has your memory been impacted?