I haven’t done much thus far to celebrate Epilepsy Awareness Month (March) or Purple Day (March 26). Though I had fantastic ambitions to throw a theme party for Purple Day, I was eventually able to acknowledge that given the energy that the tasks would require, it’s probably too soon after my latest period of seizure precariousness to decorate my apartment with all the purple streamers, balloons, etc. available on Amazon, attempt to convince my husband that he isn’t too old to smear purple body paint on his . . . body (I’ll let you imagine where), and prepare an array of artificially purple foods. Sure, I’m feeling much better than I was a month ago, but I have a tendency to go from zero to a hundred as soon as my seizures have calmed down enough that I’m able to walk without stumbling, and I’m (halfheartedly) trying to break myself of that habit. Besides, I love theme parties too much to host a mediocre one. I’d rather wait until I’m confident that I can plan something ridiculously over the top.
While yes, I’m a little disappointed in myself for not spreading awareness this month in more formal/constructive ways, please rest assured that I haven’t completely shirked my duties as a person with epilepsy who enjoys lecturing other people about epilepsy. I got a purple pedicure last Friday (I’m going to say that this counts both as self-care, essential[?] for seizure management, and as a Purple Day party for my toes), and I completed an embroidery project that communicates an epilepsy-related message.
As I stitched loud and clear, epilepsy does suck. I hate that it exists, I hate that I have it, and I hate how it’s affected my health and the health of people I care about (and, you know, the health of people I don’t know).
However, in a bid to accept my diagnosis with less resentment, I’ve spent some time this Epilepsy Awareness Month trying to adjust my thinking so that I can see epilepsy in a slightly different light. I’ve met some pretty cool people because of it, after all, and it’s allowed me to learn a lot about myself and about my ability to cope with difficult situations. As a bonus, my postictal weirdness provides endless stories and quotes with which I can—and do—mock myself, though I had enough material for a book of Stupid Stuff I’ve Said and Done even before I got a neurological disorder.
Most importantly, of course, epilepsy has turned me into a cyborg, and for that I can’t thank it enough.
Happy Epilepsy Awareness Month, readers. May you go forth and spread awareness, and may you never have a(nother) seizure.