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My younger brother Seb has only recently been diagnosed with epilepsy, but he has had cerebral palsy his whole life. He’s an extremely active young adult, playing tennis for Cornwall and football for his school. For him, it is difficult having epilepsy whilst being largely able-bodied and very academically capable. As his sibling and older brother, I try to be there every step of the way, helping where I can alongside my family.
Seb has to put up with an enormous amount, particularly discrimination on account of his condition. As a sibling/carer, it is difficult witnessing the struggle he goes through, the behavioural effects of the meds, the blackouts and seizures. What is difficult is when we lack the support network to help us help Seb.
We can’t ever fully understand what he faces on a daily basis, but we do our best to make his day as smooth as possible. We are all immensely proud of Seb and the effort he puts in, he tries to put his best foot forward every day and is showing that with the right attitude, everything is possible!
For this reason, two close friends and I will be cycling the 1,700km Vie Francigena from Canterbury to Rome this summer. We intend to raise £1,500 for Epilepsy Action and Teenage Cancer Trust. in the past, Epilepsy Action gave advice to my family when Seb was first diagnosed. The work they do is invaluable helping spread information and awareness about the condition.
I know at this difficult time people are struggling financially, but any donation, however small, will really help benefit families and people across the UK who find themselves confronted by the difficulties that epilepsy can bring their way.