How One Moment Can Change Everything; An Epilepsy story

Sunday, July 28, 2019 started like any other: I woke up, dreaded and bitched about going to work that day, I actually went to work, and then I went home. After I got home, there was something I had to go get really quick, so I hopped in the car, and away I went again. I had no idea that my life was about to change in what, to me, seemed like an instant. I don’t remember how far I got; the last thing I remember is pulling out of the apartment building and driving a little way down the road, and the next thing I knew, I was waking up to a desperate banging on the car window. A woman, I later learned was a cop, was banging on the window of my car, trying to get me to come back to reality and open the door. I opened the door to learn that I had had a seizure while I was driving and drove straight into a light pole.

I remember being really disoriented, and not understanding why or how I’d crashed the car, and thinking, “Oh fuck, I crashed Patrick’s car. He’s going to be pissed! Is he going to leave me because I crashed his car?”

Everyone keeps telling me, “Cars can be replaced, you can’t.”

It’s truly amazing, though, the irrational thoughts that were going through my mind as I was faced with this information. A lot of it is still fuzzy, although I do remember making a “That’s what she said joke” as they wheeled me into the ER. I remember trying to put on a brave face, and then I remember bits and pieces during the night. Apparently, I’d started seizing again in the ER, so they admitted me for observation and drugged me up to try and stop the seizures.

Mind you, this is not the first time I’d had a gran mal seizure: my first one was as a preteen, which we thought was an isolated event, but then I had one again in 2016, and that’s when I was diagnosed with epilepsy; I was 27 years old. Even though this was not my first, this was definitely the most traumatic. I drove past the pole a few days later and it was not only bent where the car struck it, but the full pole now leans. The cop who witnessed the event, and subsequently helped me, told me that it’s a miracle that the pole didn’t fall because of how much it was now leaning, or that I didn’t hit someone else.

I feel guilty because I destroyed his beloved car; I also feel somewhat guilty because I cannot drive, and I’m also now terrified to drive, so other people now have to cart me around.

But I’m so grateful that I am a place now where I have more knowledge on how to work from home, whereas in 2016, when I couldn’t drive, I didn’t have the same knowledge and/or coping skills, and/or nearly as strong of a support system as I do now. I am so grateful to the cop who witnessed the event and went out of her way to help me, the people who she said stopped and offered to help, the ambulance workers who had an amazing sense of humor and dealt with my stubborn ass, and the medical staff who took care of me in the hospital.

I am so grateful to my husband, who has been so supportive during this time; my family; my friends who have regularly checked on me and have sent endless amounts of love.

I am grateful to this blog for giving me an outlet for difficult feelings, and the community I’m slowly building here.

So from the bottom of my heart: thank you.

2 thoughts on “How One Moment Can Change Everything; An Epilepsy story

  1. I love you Em!! Ao glad you are ok and have many good samaritans in your corner on this day. I know Patrick loves you dearly, and will do anything for you. I am always here and know your life will be an amazing one, you will overcome.

    Like

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