Sunday, 20 May 2012

Wow! What a difference a question makes...

This was the question that made all the difference: "What do you do when you have a seizure and what should I do?"
Blimey! I don't hear that very often - in fact, I'm not sure I've heard it before.
Hot on the heels of me blogging about the optician who assumed I fell and convulsed, without asking any questions (No, not THAT kind of epilepsy), came a meeting with physiotherapist Pauline at Kingston Hospital.
Pauline made no such assumptions - even though the fact I was there after breaking a wrist during a seizure might have slightly excused her. She asked me whether, in the event of me having a seizure, she should call an ambulance ('No, thank you') and whether I generally needed to go to hospital ('No, never - well unless I break a bone. Longterm use of medication has made me snap easily!! Osteopenia.')
According to Epilepsy Research, just over half of all epilepsy sufferers have the flake and shake (grand mal - although now we're supposed to call them tonic-clonic) seizures. Which means around half don't.
Why is that significant?
Because so many people, every day, are misunderstood when their behaviour doesn't fall into the neat little descriptive boxes that society has set out for them. So even if that behaviour is out-of-the-ordinary, it's understood if society accepts that 'people with epilepsy flake and shake' - and that's makes it utterly frustrating and unhelpful for the rest of us whose epilepsy doesn't comply!
Take note, people: we need more Paulines for a positive experience.

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