Tuesday, July 1, 2014

Living Body Without a Soul

This weekend, for some reason, I had the courage to watch something that overwhelms my life, but I've never seen: a seizure.

It was on youtube, of course. I know a little bit about the medical terms for different types of seizures; partial, generalized, etc., I've tried not to connect these words to my experience, because I can only talk about what's happening on my end; I can't see what everyone else sees.

I found a video of a man, apparently having a partial seizure. He started out by trying to explain what he was seeing during his aura. After that, he started licking his lips, it looked like he was chewing gum. His loved ones knew what was happening during the video, but I was confused. I had to watch the video over and over to get a grasp on what was actually happening.

The one thing I did notice was the man's eyes. They were black and lifeless. He was looking directly at the camera for a good part of the video, and all I could see was an emptiness in his eyes. It was like there was nothing there; a living body without a soul.

I know my doctors would all agree and tell me that, yes, your eyes dilate during a seizure, dot, dot, dot. But what I saw during the video was what my loved ones most likely see when I'm having a seizure, something I just can't wrap my head around: Jeremy's body moving and talking, but lifeless.

It was an eye opening experience; a very scary look into what's happening to an epilepsy patient on the outside, when I only know what's happening on the inside.


This weekend, Sara and I spend some time in Milwaukee to see a concert. It was a great time. Everyone was a lot younger than us, and annoying as hell, but I was able to see through that, which is very surprising for those who know me well.

The whole weekend was, and I knew this going into it, a perfect breeding ground for a seizure. Crowed, hot, long, little sleep, etc.

I can decipher, in my own language, what kind of seizure these experiences can create. On the way home, halfway from Milwaukee to Chicago, I cursed out loud knowing that I was having an aura in the car. I lifted my butt off the seat to grab my VNS magnet from out of my right pocket and started to swipe it over the device implanted in my left chest.

I started sinking slowly into myself, as the right side of my body went numb. I remember this because I was staring at my right hand, it was opening and closing at it's own discretion. By then I had already over the VNS magnet from my right hand to the left so I wouldn't drop it; muscle memory, I guess. This is probably the point in the seizure where my eyes go black; just an amazing thing to think about.

After I thought the seizure was over, I slunk down in my seat and groaned in disappointment. Yeah, the weekend was the perfect storm for a seizure, but I couldn't even make it home... almost though.

I was pretty alert, meaning, I knew that I just had a seizure, but I still had to ask Sara to be sure that what I saw actually happened. After the seizure I was a little depressed, and very tired.

The rest of the way home, and when I found my bed back in Illinois, I just slept. The best medicine for an Epilepsy patient recovering from a seizure.

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