Things Epilepsy Taught Me 

Life lessons I learned from hard times.

My mom has had seizures my entire life, and the longest she had ever went without having one was the 9 months she was pregnant with me. It’s something that was never completely controlled on medicine and always lingered in the back of her head before she did any kind of activity. 

My mom is now on the recovery from having inner cranial monitoring with a full resection. Let me explain this in a more common way. She had a surgery on Wednesday June 14th to put EEG monitoring leads on her brain to record seizure activity, from there we spent 9 days in the hospital waiting for her to have seizures, and that’s hard to pray for. Friday June 23rd she had the final surgery to remove the part of her brain that was the location of the seizures starting. Now today on June 25th we are taking her home to (hopefully!) live a seizure free life.

I learned some things during this long process, and it taught me how to deal with brain surgery, but also life. 

  • Always hope for the best, even with possibility for the worst. The day before the final surgery we were told that her potential resect area was extremely close to her speech, and near her motor skills, and there was a potential of her not being able to talk for up to 6 weeks. That’s tough to hear, but we stayed positive and knew the Lord’s will would be fulfilled no matter what. When we finally got to go back to she spoke to us! We stayed positive when we knew the result could hurt. 
  • Surround yourself with people who are there for you, and care about your wellbeing. Staying nearly 2 weeks in a hospital, you really find out who your friends are. They are the people who come visit, call, text and pray for you. They are understanding of the hard times, and rejoice with you in the good times. Never settle for less and surround yourself with mediocre people. 
  • Go outside whenever you can. Fresh air, you take it for granted every single day. Hospitals get stuffy and claustrophobic after a short time, and going outside, even for just 5 short minutes, makes all the difference in the world. 
  • Don’t be afraid to cry. Sometimes you get overwhelmed and don’t know if you’re strong enough to handle the situation. Have a good cry and you’ll be good to go. You’re stronger than you think, and you can handle whatever life throws at you. Crying isn’t for the weak, it’s for the strong people who need to let go of the things they have been keeping inside. You don’t have to cry only when you’re sad, crying when you’re happy is also great for the soul. 
  • Become friends with the people in charge. I don’t mean to suck up to them. Build good relationships with people who can help make life a little easier. Be personal with them, tell them what scares you and what concerns you. They are there to help. You never know when you might need clothes washed and your friend can sneak you into the hospital laundry room.
  • Someone out there always has it worse than you. When you spend time in an ICU waiting room, you begin to feel very blessed. You watch people come in and out with an opposite outcome of yours, and your heart breaks for them. You talk to people who are starting their 3rd month there. It’s easy to feel like your life is a mess that is falling apart, but it’s not. It could definitely be worse.

The time I spent with my mom in the hospital is something I would never want to do again, but also I’m extremely grateful for it. Not just for it being answered prayers for my mom, but it taught me so much about life, and humbled me greatly.