In March of 2008 Justin and I found out we were having a baby, about a month after that we got even more life-changing news.
Justin was diagnosed with epilepsy. At the time we didn’t really understand the effects this disease would have on our family, but as he began to receive medication and tests we noticed things changing. Because of this, my pregnancy was not as I had always pictured it would be – I was taking care of my husband, not the other way around. I don’t resent him for that. It made me stronger; us stronger as a couple.
Over the years we have struggled with finding the right neurologist for him and his seizures are still not being controlled as they should be with his medication. Luckily as of last month he finally got a neurologist he likes and we feel like he listens to us and has Justin’s best interest in mind.
If you follow me on Twitter, you may already know this, but…
About two weeks ago Justin had a very bad seizure. He has had one grand mal seizure (these are full body/loss of consciousness seizures) before, and has petite mal seizures (absence seizures) daily, but I have never witnessed a grand mal seizure before. It was the most terrifying experience of my life. I am incredibly grateful to God because the timing of this seizure was perfect, if there is such a thing. Morgan, my cousin, was at my house as well as my brother, when it happened. Morgan is a nursing student and had just covered seizures in class. She was able to take care of Justin while I kept Madi in the other room so she didn’t have to see her daddy like that. Justin also fell and hit his head on our entertainment center and was bleeding profusely so it was even more terrifying. To be classified as a grand mal seizure it only has to last 10 seconds. Justin’s lasted 5 minutes, so it was a very bad episode. We are truly blessed that he did not hurt himself worse than the head injury and that Morgan was there to help him.
However, since the seizure things have been very different – both good and not so good. The good is that Justin and I have more respect, love, and understanding of each other than we ever have in our relationship. After witnessing his seizure it made his disease more real to me and helps me understand now that when isn’t feeling well, it’s critical that he rests. The not so good is that Justin has suffered tremendous side effects from the seizure. He is suffering from greater short term memory loss than he had before, concentration loss, longer staring spells (petite mal seizures), even worse daily migraines, and extreme exhaustion.
The day after his seizure we had an appointment with his neurologist. His neurologist is referring Justin to MUSC (a major medical teaching hospital in Charleston, SC) for a 3-day study where they will take him off of his medications and try to induce a seizure. If the seizure activity is all coming from one spot in his brain then he will undergo brain surgery. If he has brain surgery it does not cure his epilepsy, but decreases his risk of seizures to about 20%.
I’m sharing all of this with you all because my blog is a place for me to write what is on my mind and obviously this will be a big part of that in the next few months. Justin can no longer drive so again, we are blessed that we work at the same place. He also cannot watch Madi by himself and things are just very different at home. We are working through it though and are praying daily for guidance and understanding through all of this.
I hope y’all have a great short work week and I’ll post a weekend re-cap soon! Thanks for reading!
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