A couple weeks ago I was approved for disability benefits. I was (and still am) a bit hesitant to write about it because I'm not sure how to take the next step, or what the next step may be. Although, I'm very grateful and I'm in need of help, I can't get the skewed thought out of my head that I'm being paid to be sick. What I owe in medical bills far, far, far exceeds the amount I'm receiving, but it still doesn't erase the black eye on a proud man.
Right now we're working with Northwestern and Mayo Clinic to start a new round of treatments called IVIg (Intravenous immunoglobulin), which is a product extracted from donated blood plasma. Even after a thousand hours online and several days worth of explanation, I'm still a little bit hazy on how this will work for the treatment of my particular kind of Epilepsy. Although I'm a bit uneducated, this doesn't stop me from saying yes to even the slight possibility of seizure reduction.
I'll keep reiterating the fact that, although my seizures are still frequent and strong, what's most important to me is my state of mind. Everyday I have to look at the scar on my wrist and when I notice it, I try to put myself back to that moment and what was going through my mind the second that I decided that the only way for me to release the tension and quiet the voices in my head would be to open a vein. This is a dark subject, I know, but if I can't communicate these issues then they fester and then the scar may never go away.
I've had two very brave people tell me that they've given blood in the last couple of weeks and I want to thank them and call on others to do the same. The treatments that I'm about to receive require blood from thousands of donors, so just imagine how many other people are going through similar treatments and, given the recent tragedies in our county, how many more people you can help. When I'm well again, I will make it a point to give blood, but for now I'm calling upon you. Thank you.