I was diagnosed with epilepsy in my early 20's just weeks after getting engaged. It was a difficult time for both of us, but with an upcoming wedding, I concentrated on that rather that the diagnosis. Once the wedding was over reality hit, and I was told exactly what epilepsy involved. However, my medication was pretty much controlling my seizures, so I felt lucky that I could like a fairly normal life.
In 2014 we became pregnant, I had no seizures during my whole pregnancy! I couldn't believe my luck, and in May 2015 I gave birth to my baby girl.
My little girl changed my life. I had always worked with children and had longed for children of my own.
In 2016 my seizures increased, along with migraines.
My medication was increased and my consultant introduced a new medication for the migraines.
This new medication was unsafe in pregnancy... No more children.
I accepted and started on the medication, at this point I became very down, my memory was awful, I was called a liar by people who didn't understand the side effects, I was writing everything down but I still struggled. It was a really tough time for me and my family.
A year later I joined a gym, this helped me a lot! I spoke to my consultant and he decided to let me slowly come off the second lot of medication. I kept up the exercise and healthy eating and my headaches reduced.
A few months later we spoke about trying for baby number two, I was so desperate to complete my family, but with my seizures still fairly frequent we were warned of the risks.
I was torn, I had a successful pregnancy before, could I do the same again? Could my body take it? Could I cope if I did lose the baby? All of these questions went around and around, however we fell pregnant very quickly!
A few weeks in, a tonic clonic seizure struck. The baby was so small, I knew it wasn't good. We went for a scan, and there was our baby, with a heartbeat! I was relieved, however I knew it was early days!
A few weeks later, a second seizure struck. We survived it.
In March 2018 I gave birth to my second little girl.
I know how lucky I am, I am so so thankful for all that I have. I am thankful for the care I received and the support I had.
I now want to use my experience to give other people hope. Epilepsy is in my life but it does not define me! Never ever lose hope!