Quote of the Day

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It’s easy to lose ourselves in a lack of self worth when we’re battling a health condition. Sometimes it’s easy to wake up and ask oneself, “What’s the point?” because we’ve reached breaking point or a simple task today is a mammoth struggle.

So for all of you out there fighting epilepsy and any other debilitating health condition, this one is for you – you are good enough!

Stress Elimination, Seizure Reduction & Island Living

The aqua colored water dotted with the dark congregations of coral below the surface just screams,

“Jump in!”

However, I am torn between that and the need to regurgitate the words tumbling around my head before they disappear.  I’m sitting here writing this in an exercise book, (no doubt now constituted as old fashioned) and I look up to nothing short of a paradise.

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The majestic mountains tower over our little water bungalow offering both protection whilst at the same time ensuring we know who this island belongs to; after all, it was formed as a volcano between 1.5 to 2.5 million years ago – now extinct, lucky for us.

With the sunshine, warm breeze, cloudless skies and idyllic views, I realize a number of things have occurred and all of them are stress related – or not as the case may be.

We have been staying here on the island of Moorea just Northwest of Tahiti for two days now on our honeymoon.  When I say that it is impossible to be stressed here I mean just that.  I can lie on the beach in Seattle too, but as lovely as that is it’s just not the same!  The reason I know this is because of the recognition of effects and changes within my body.

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Digestion has always been a troublesome boomerang of sorts that, having just figured out methods to remain well, something changes and I’m back at square one again with those familiar friends: nausea, gas and bloating.  The last couple of months have seen indigestion and acid reflux become the norm after food consumption.  It seems no matter how neutral the alkali content or however healthy the food I experience the same result.   That duration of time was also exceptionally stressful.

Stress is a sneaky little chap, it is deceptive in that it makes one feel like there is less stress present than in reality.  That right there is one of the incredible functions of our bodies.  They manage and heal whatever we throw their way tremendously well.  Quite honestly, I’m not surprised we’re riddled with allergies, cancers, skin conditions, respiratory problems and other health issues considering what we put in our systems and subject ourselves to.  Anyhow I digress…

As those of you who have organized any sort of wedding will know there is plenty to do with little extra tasks slinking out of the background as an added surprise.  Life clearly has a sense of humor because when you throw in some visa issues, challenging immigration officers and a time limit of six months to organize the wedding – the pressure is on!  But now, I live in the present.   No more organization, just tranquil island life with a few virgin piña coladas on the beach for good measure.

I am eating acidic foods and I can happily report that I have none of the above symptoms.

In regards to my epilepsy, well, my body is so at peace right now I don’t know if I’ve even had any seizures.  This then begs the question, just how much is stress accountable for seizures and ill health?

There has been plenty of speculation and research both in my blog and by many people who have made similar discoveries to mine so this is more of an age old question but for some, it’s the first they may have heard of it.

It seems horrifying that something as simple as visiting an island for just two days can potentially eliminate seizure activity and digestive issues.  My next thought is that of course, realistically, we can’t all just run off to a an exotic island, so how do we integrate those aspects of being on that island into life in order to recreate that stress free existence?

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This is a theory which has been floating into the abyss of my mind for a fair few years.  I’ve recognized the correlation between the two and for each person their ‘how’ and ‘what’ will differ from the next one.  It’s only in my current situation since moving to Seattle and immigration determining my fate, that I see the blessing in disguise.

I believe it will be something that is a life-long learning curve.   I think the fundamental basis is that as a sufferer of a condition whether it is epilepsy, arthritis, asthma, eczema etc., you have to be willing to sacrifice and make lifestyle changes for your health to improve whether it be through diet, alcohol consumption, financing therapies or supportive vitamins.  There is no pill which will cure everything and I think the sooner we realize it is down to us to make the modifications, the sooner we will see a significant improvement in our wellbeing.

A Little Goes A Long Way

I came across this immensely heart warming story, (an excerpt from the 16 page essay by Loren Eiseley), and it was a reminder to me, and to all those out there dedicating their time advocating for epilepsy, the good that’s being done.  

There are times when I’ve made the mistake of looking at my stats or comparing myself to others and the work they do. I then look at my blog and wonder if what I’m doing really is having an impact. It’s in these moments of self doubt that this story and its meaning needs to be read.  I know I’m not the only person in this situation.  Everyone in the same boat will wonder similar thoughts from time to time, thinking about what they’re working towards and if it will be received positively. 

I remember my goal for starting this blog and it was this; if I could change the life of just one person through my treatment and life experiences with seizures then my goal would have been achieved. I’m coming up to three years now with Finding Freedom with Epilepsy and when I take a long hard look, it’s been a success. 

So, that one starfish that I began with has turned into many starfishes and the added bonus is I’ve made plenty of friends as I made my way along the beach.

In times of doubt all you bloggers and advocates out there, keep this deep and meaningful little story to hand to remind you of the excellent work you’re creating and the impact you’re having on those you don’t even know.

Keep it going!

Quote of the Day

This is why I see my epilepsy as a blessing. Sounds crazy, I know, right?! Who would want to actually have seizures? I’m not advocating that but I cannot change the hand I have been dealt.  I am determined to make the best of the situation and there are so many things which I have to be grateful for because of the epilepsy. The roads I’ve walked, the places it’s taken me to, my outlook on life and the determination and zest I have for life. Perhaps more than anything it’s the gratitude for every little thing I am able to do. A task that is simple and easy for a person without epilepsy to achieve becomes, for me, about overcoming the invisible challenges that no one else sees and then success is a wonderful more satisfying victory.