Tag Archive for daily medications

We’ve had a Hiccup, It’s Time for a Reset

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Epilepsy has been consuming us for the past few months.  Or should I say momentarily consuming us.  Our daughter Hilary had a grand mal seizure at our home the day after Thanksgiving. This was her 4th seizure in the past twelve months, and only the second time she’s had an injury that required stitches/staples. Oh my!  She injured the top of her head when she fell, and probably hit it on a small step.  Hilary has had a history with epilepsy since she was 4 years old.  You can read about her journey here.

When your kids have chronic conditions that require medication management, and doctor visits for maintenance of those meds, you expect to have a few bumps in the road on occasion.  However,  with Hilary, her bumps in the road have caught us off guard and thrown a wrench in the matrix of our world that was completely unexpected.

Before February of 2013 Hilary had gone 10, count them 10 years seizure free.  That means her meds were working, doing their job, and keeping her seizures at bay.  The seizure the day after Thanksgiving put Hilary on a 4-6 month no-driving restriction. That one fact alone has turned her world upside down and inside out.  The no-driving restriction has taken a big bite from her independence.  And to Hilary’s credit she has handled that fact like a trooper. Staying positive, taking the help where she needs to, and just getting through one day at a time.

The other hiccup Hilary had shortly after her seizure was the medications that were being added to her regimen started to give her problems.  One med made her get the uncontrollable chills, and then the next one a terrible allergic reaction.  Hilary got a fever and then broke out in hives within 12 hours.  This prompted a second visit to the ER in less than two weeks.  Not the way Hilly had been planning to start her holiday season. The allergic reaction was quickly brought under control, and she was able to come back home.

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As of this writing Hilary is coming up on four months seizure free.  Can you see me doing my best cheer-leading impression?  She is hoping to get back to driving soon, and then she will not have to have her parentals carting her everywhere.  We have had a lot of bonding time recently.

There are so many things we are thankful for through this hiccup of life-

> Hilary was getting ready for work the morning of her seizure. Thankfully she hadn’t gone out the door yet.

> Her employer is gracious and flexible with her job assignment and duties.

> The care and compassion from family and friends helping Hilary deal with her seizure, and the changes to her meds.

>The never-ending love and selfless-ness of her family and friends surrounding her and getting her where she needs to be everyday.

> The love of her very special grandparents and great-grandparents.  She’s a lucky girl to be blessed with their presence in her life.

It is times like these when life gives you a friendly reminder to never take things for granted. Be thankful for each and every moment that is good, that brings you happiness, and allows you to tell your loved ones how important they are in your world.

Hilary’s journey with epilepsy is ongoing, and not always smooth sailing.  But, if our story touches one person or family dealing with epilepsy and lets them know that they are not alone, then our story is 100% worth sharing.

Photo credits: T.Spindle

A Humbling Reminder

My sweet baby girl with her niece.
My sweet baby girl with her niece.

Almost a month ago now,  The Party House had an emergency.  Not the worst emergency ever, but an emergency none the less.  Our daughter, Hilary, is epileptic, and she had a seizure right here at home.  She had been running a few miles on the treadmill in our game room, and Travel Man and I heard this loud clunk, and bang, and we knew something was wrong.  We bolted to the game room simultaneously and found Hilary on the floor in a full on tonic-clonic (grand mal) seizure.    Travel Man quickly got her away from the end of the treadmill, I ran to grab the phone to call 9-1-1, and got the treadmill powered off.  Her convulsions probably lasted for 1-2 minutes, but it seemed like forever and a day before they stopped.  At this moment in time a wave of emotions washed over me like a ton of bricks.  The memories of all of the medical procedures and emergencies that we have been through with the kids over the years played like a short, quick movie in my mind.  And I’m thinking, this can’t be happening again. I wrote a few posts about our family’s life story last year, and about how I stopped sweating the small things in life.

This is the first time Hilary had a seizure where she got injured.  She was bleeding a little and we had to locate the source, which was actually her lip. (Required 3 stitches at the ER). We did call 9-1-1 for the paramedics to help us out with getting her vital signs checked out, and transporting her to the Emergency Room.  And I have to tell you all that the 9-1-1 operator who was talking to me was a saint.  She calmly and patiently talked me through what we needed to be checking on Hilary.  The biggest concern was with her breathing and making sure she did not vomit.  This was Hilary’s first seizure in almost 8 years.  It had been such a long time since her last seizure we did not want to take any chances with her having another one on the way to the hospital.

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My sweet baby girl with her boo-boo lip.

Now fast forward to our hospital visit.  My daughter is sitting in the ER bed, her lip swollen and stitched up and all I am thinking is I am ever so thankful she was not in her car when this all happened.  I am  so thankful I am sitting here talking to her, and her only injury is a fat lip,  I can deal with that.  Of course your mind wanders to the “What If’s”, and “What Could Have Happened’s”.  But mine and Travel Man’s thoughts were resting on the fact that Hilary was going to be ok, and we were taking her back home.

All of Hilary’s seizures (I believe she has had 4) have occurred at home.  Ironic isn’t it?  We have been right there to take care of her, and get her through all of them, except one.  The first seizure she had we think happened while she was in the bathroom, and we had no idea anything had happened to her.  She did not take any big falls, and did not remember anything afterward.  She thought she had passed out from being dehydrated or having the flu or something.  The other three seizures were all very sudden, with big falls,  and with no warning whatsoever.  That’s the scariest part of Hilary’s seizures.  She has never had any physical warning that they are about to happen.

So, Hilary has had a very humbling reminder that her meds are ever so important to her well-being.  After this seizure we promptly got her a new med reminder box, and she is diligently back on her med routine.  She realizes now more than ever that the daily meds she takes will not go away anytime soon, and that she will need to take them from here to eternity.

Hilary and I chatted about me writing this post.  She is quite protective of her emotions and feelings, and I would never share this story with all of you without her permission.  Hilary had this to say about her seizure, “I was too forgetful about my meds.  It had been so long since my last seizure that I did not really think about the possibilities.  My epilepsy had been on the back burner.  So, if I forgot my meds I would just shrug it off and take them the next time.  This time, with this seizure was just one too many times.  This was a wake up call that this is for life.”

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