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12+ months to 2 days

Someone in the US got in touch with me yesterday. A few days ago they had their first seizure, ever, and were looking for support & advice.

Within two days of her first seizure she’d had a CT scan and an EEG. She was diagnosed with complex partial seizures (the same type they think I have) and will be starting meds.

All this within two days of her first seizure!

In contrast, next month will mark a year since my first appt with a GP about seizures. I was treated disgustingly, had to fight to get on the waiting list for a neurologist, and was told it would be a 12+ month wait.

I ended up in A&E due to seizures last October, which was actually kind of a good thing as it expedited my neurology appt, & I saw her 1.5 months later. I had my MRI 3 weeks ago, and am waiting for an EEG (my neuro’s sent off 2 referrals, but the local hospital isn’t acting on them).

The reason I’m posting this is because I’m so sick of abled people not understanding what a hideous monster the NHS is, and how disgusting it is. This person had two seizures total, I’m having over 300 a month and have had no support or treatment yet.

Whenever I try explain my hatred for the NHS, ableds ALWAYS bring up ‘yeah but the NHS is free and you have to pay loads in the US, so it is better’…my dad is TERRIBLE for this.

Firstly, you can say that because you don’t have a condition that puts your life in danger every single day, that you’re not being listened to or given treatment for.

And secondly – just because I complain about the NHS doesn’t mean I want rid, or would rather pay for healthcare. That’s not the only two options there are (shit free healthcare or awesome healthcare you pay loads for). How about an NHS that gets more funding, where treatment is faster and Dr’s care + are educated? Where instead of waiting 12+ months, everything was sorted in 4-6?

That shouldn’t be too much to ask for.

I know quite a few spoonies in Canada. One has suspected simple partial seizures, and is setting a neuro, having an EEG & MRI within 2 months of their 1st appt. Their healthcare is free and so very much better than ours.

It’s not an either-or, it’s a ‘the NHS needs improving because this isn’t okay’…and frankly, if you think it is good enough as it is, because you don’t have a disability, you’re just ignorant & ableist.

I am so SO tired of living with so many seizures. I’m so desperate for help from the NHS, yet I just keep getting treated like shit.

And when people try argue that UK spoonies have it good with the NHS…I just can’t.

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Broken

I had another broken day today 🙄

Yesterday we tried to have a nice day, it was an epic fail…I almost ended up in hospital due to having so many seizures, the day was awful & very much ruined. I was left asking myself why I even try to do anything/leave the house anymore 🙄

Being so physically unwell obviously takes a toll mentally, and after yesterday, today I’ve just been struggling hugely. I wanted to hurt myself, I felt suicidal, same old bipolar crap. Add to that a pet died unexpectedly and my bf’s parents are being absolute dicks…and yeah, it’s been a bad day.

I started to feel a little bit better this evening. I just get tired of all my disabilities have taken from me. I get tired of not being able to leave the house, or have a life, and yesterday showed that so clearly.

I posted this photo yesterday online. This was me after I’d attempted to leave the house; I’d had 29 seizures, felt dreadful, and a migraine had hit me as a result of the high number of seizures. I might have an invisible disability, but that doesn’t make it any less real…

I can’t remember if I posted about this already or not (I have no memory anymore, my brain can’t really produce new memories very well) but my bf called the hospital about my MRI results, and also asked about my EEG. He was told by the hospital that’s too far for us to travel that they have sent off two referrals to the local hospital for my EEG, because they want it done asap, but the local hospital just aren’t acting on it…how is that okay?!? 😩

I’ve had significantly less seizures today but my mood is in the pits…I’ll take that over the other way round, I guess!

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Anyone w/ MRI experience?

So yesterday I got my appt through for my MRI at the nearer hospital, and it’s this Friday 😳

My bf(/carer) rang today to ask a few questions, eg about dimming lighting, turning lights off etc. He also said “during seizures Dally may twitch or move their hand/arm – what happens in that situation?”, and the nurse said if I have seizure and move, the MRI is ruined 😳😫

She then asked how likely it was I’d have a seizure, and it’s like um…very? 😅

I mean travel there will have weakened me & caused seizures, the lights at the hospital will have trigger me, and even on a ‘good’ day for seizures (w/ no big triggers) that sees me having 10-15 seizures…so yeah, add in some BIG triggers and I’m definitely gonna have a couple in 20-45 minutes of MRI-fun-time!!

So the nurse was like ‘hmm, that is problematic’, and we’re here thinking WHY WAS NOBODY TOLD THAT I HAVE SO MANY SEIZURES A DAY, & STAYING COMPLETELY STILL FOR SO LONG WOULD BE AN ISSUE?! Like is that not kind of important?!? 😂

Seriously, if we didn’t know how useless the NHS is, we could have not phoned to let them know and just assumed it would be on my file!! Then we’d have got there and nothing would have been prepared and we’d be screwed!

The nurse asked my bf how reliable my auras are, and he said I get auras with about 70% of my seizures. So now the plan is if I have an aura during the MRI, I press the panic button. They’re also gonna possibly put extra padding around my head in the cage, to try keep it still if I seize without an aura 😫

My question to anyone with experience who has experience with an MRI – do you know if they can pause, during? Eg if I pushed the panic button, can they pause the MRI until I’m still again or would it be starting again?!

Good news though, they have said they can turn all the lights off in the MRI room, including in the machine itself. So at least that’s something 😅

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Happy Christmas everybody

We’ve had a truly awful lead up to Christmas. Thankfully myself and partner celebrated about 10 days ago and exchanged presents, because I was having a good day for seizures…I’m HUGELY grateful we celebrated then as we actually had a nice day!!

My seizures have been absolutely disastrous this past week, I’ve had two awful migraines…one was my worst yet, with me writhing in bed for hours in absolute agony. Today is another day with seizure clusters and me just feeling totally out of it. And to add to the awfulness, one of our dogs had to be PTS less than a week ago…sheesh. 

I hope your Christmas build-up has gone better than ours, have a lovely day 🎄

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Preparing for my appt

Guys I am SO SCARED about this appt!!!!

I’m not even totally sure why. The day’s gonna be a big day out, which will make me sicker so that won’t be nice…but I’m just so stressed that I’m gonna get fobbed off and not taken seriously again. I just want to get to the bottom of these seizures and to get a diagnosis. I don’t care if I have epilepsy or PNES, I just want to *know* so I can hopefully get treatment that works and we can have a better life…

I don’t want them to diagnose me with epilepsy if they’re non-epileptic seizures, because that means taking strong, pointless medication. But I don’t want them to immediately jump to a diagnosis of PNES based purely on my diagnosis of bipolar, because then my brain could be damaged by so many seizures or they could progress to tonic clonic if untreated. I basically want to be taken seriously and given the right diagnosis!!

I’m so scared about this appt XD

We went to my bf’s parents last night and my new welder’s goggles did really well with the various lights. I had an awful cluster partway through the night, which could have been because a light was flashing down the back/side of the goggles…but I was able to recover from that within about half an hour and enjoy the rest of the night again, slowly returning to normal 🙂

My partner filmed some of it for the neurologist appt too!

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Seizure clusters

Seizure clusters are where my seizures happen in quick succession, often without me fully returning to ‘normal’ between them, although sometimes I do.

I average one cluster every 1-2 days, although on days where I’m weaker (eg days where I do too much, am physically unwell etc) I often have several clusters throughout the day.

Seizures in clusters affect me more than just one off seizures, even if they’re small. However I usually have BIG seizures in clusters, especially the longer they go on – in terms of type and length of seizure. 

My last cluster was 24 minutes long with 8 seizures.

It involved seizures where I flopped over (like all my muscles turned to jelly, if I was standing I’d have crumpled to the floor), I fidget and grabbed things, I drooled during them, and after/between them I was very out of it and was talking nonsense. An example, I said that our pumpkin was the only one grown by the farmer and he didn’t mean to sell it – I cried over this!!! Can you imagine having to keep a straight face through this shit?! My poor boyfriend, I’m glad I don’t remember any of it 😂

After clusters my brain is mush. I feel extremely tired, often have a bad headache, and usually need a nap. My memory is affected after a seizure for anywhere between 30 & 90 minutes.

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Victorious yet anxious

Eight days ago I started using a new CBD oil, from CBD Brothers. 

I wasn’t feeling too hopeful, as I’ve tried five different CBD oils before and none have ever done that much.

Fast forward to this week, I’ve had THREE days with less than three seizures per day, and today (at 6:15pm) I’ve had just one seizure!!

This hasn’t happened in over 2 years!!!

Whilst I’m absolutely over the moon, it’s made me incredibly anxious too…will the NHS be even less interested in getting me diagnosed, if I’m having seizures less often and have found something myself that works? Seizures are the only thing the DWP seemed to take seriously – if I’m having less, will they reduce my benefit?Even though I’m still spending all day (other than an hour’s dog walk) hidden inside behind dark curtains, with the lights off…I can’t imagine they will listen.

I feel like such a dick, because here I am panicking about everything after one day of having just one seizure…but then I think hey, of course it’s going to feel strange and scary, for the last 2+ years you’ve been having dozens of seizures a day, and ANY type of big change can trigger anxiety.

So I’m just gonna have to treat myself gently, and focus on how INCREDIBLE it is that this CBD oil is helping my seizures. I could get a life back, and that is something to be celebrated, not feared.