My oldest daughter had a grand mal seizure when she was 26 years old, and has not had any issues since. She also deals with obsessive compulsive disorder, and is doing well because she is on a good treatment regimen for her conditions. she is a beautiful, happy woman of 39, with a 6-year old child (The Boy who frequently appears in this column.) Early on, Daughter 1 decided to face her problem and deal with it appropriately. The Boy will be her only child, as she had to go off her meds for that year in order to have a healthy child, and she isn’t going to chance that again.
Adult Onset of Epilepsy with no discernible physical cause is more common than I once thought, though it is still rather rare. It is hard to find information on it. Many adult seizures are caused by tumors, alcohol and drug abuse, or aneurysms, and frequently these can be cured.
My son, who shares the same father with Daughter 1, always showed the same intensity of thought and purpose, combined with obsessing that his father and his sister had. He recognized early on that his OCD was crippling him, and sought treatment for it.
He will be 35 in a month, and has only had his seizure disorder for 18 months. He had trouble accepting it, refusing to believe it could occur again, since his sister had only had the one seizure that we knew of. Then, when he was forced to see that he had “a problem with seizures” he believed he could cure it with the proper diet, and exercise. When that notion was proven wrong, he at last went on the meds that his doctors prescribed, and he went 10 months with no seizures.
Because he is an analytical man, he wanted to see if the meds were working, and went off them for 5 days, and had 3 grand mal seizures and at least 1 minor seizure in 2 days. Fortunately, he was in the hospital, and they were able to get him on a good regimen for his meds.
Now he has faced the reality that he has epilepsy for no apparent reason, and there is no way to cure it. To my everlasting relief, he is making good decisions and going forward with life, instead of letting his epilepsy rule him.
On occasion, a physical cause can be found for the random seizures that characterize this disorder, but frequently no cause can be found. In my children’s case, no root cause can be found, but their father’s side of the family has had some history with random aneurysms and other odd occurrences, such as clinical Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. Medication treats the symptoms, but also frequently has other effect that are not so desirable.
Thus, the dilemma that all people who must take these medicines face.
As an author, I have the perfect positive escape for the stressful things in my life. I write, I play games, I read books, and I reorganize my spoon collection–I stay busy. My chosen career is one I can carry with me, so when a family member is having a crisis, I can pack up the laptop and go to the rescue for however long it takes to help them work through the problem.
For a Vegan, this is an adventure, indeed! I have found ways to travel and dine on the road without having to go hungry.
My advice to those living with epilepsy still stands. Take the poison, and live the life you are given to its fullest. Deal with the problems when they arise and put them behind you. Happiness is a state of mind that must be cultivated.
Many people spend hours thinking about where they went wrong, and reinforcing the negative thoughts. This makes them negative, unhappy people!
To be happy, one must deliberately cultivate the positive things that are ALSO happening in their life, and give them more importance than the negative. Make your face smile, even when you aren’t being watched and you might be surprised at how much better you feel!
We all have random bad things that pop in and out of our lives. We live in a sometimes hard world, but we have this wonderful, glorious opportunity to see the real beauty of the world around us.
Grab it, and don’t let go!