My Life With Epilepsy – By Jordan Bartley

Jordan Bartley

Why do people think they know what’s best for me?  I can say that 10 years ago I thought no one knew me well enough to give me quality advice that would be beneficial specifically involving my epilepsy.  I believed anyone who didn’t have epilepsy wouldn’t care enough to put enough time into learning about it.  I was having a seizure approximately every four weeks once my body finally became used to high doses of medication.  People I assumed I would be in connection with forever began disappearing soon after I had my first seizure while driving.

I’ll admit that If it hadn’t been for my two friends in the car I probably wouldn’t be here today.  It’s still difficult to comprehend one diving in between my legs to hit the brakes and the other grabbing the steering wheel to take control.  Approximately, a year after that, I decided to reconnect w/ someone I hadn’t seen for a few years prior to my diagnosis.

Due to past experiences with people looking at me differently once they discovered I had epilepsy, I was determined to drive there alone even though my license had been taken away due to having uncontrolled seizures.  I told my parent’s that there was no possible way I would have a seizure while driving because I had just had one a few days prior.  I was yearning for freedom and who would know better than I whether I would have a seizure?  I decided to drive to see my friend that night knowing I hadn’t driven for over a year.  I was driving for about ten minutes when I began seizing and swerved off the road into a river bed.  The cops found me soaking wet in the vehicle, but thankfully I didn’t drown.  I had numerous cuts and bruises because most people can’t control their body’s physical movement when seizing.

As soon as I came to realize what had happened I slowly, but surely began looking at life differently.  There had been numerous occasions before then where I had put myself and others in danger when having an episode, but I finally realized that if I had simply listened to another’s input and took their advice this could have all been avoided.  For another to take the time to listen and/or give their advice is something everyone should be thankful for.   No longer taking this for granted, I moved to San Francisco, which has proven to be close to a perfect location for me to live.

I can say it was one of the best decisions I have ever made.  This experience also proves that sometimes you do learn the hard way, which means other’s see one’s situation from a different perspective.  This alone is something I will never forget and hope that my experience leads to knowing there are other options to choose from that will lead to the best conclusion. I now love and move about independently and enjoy my self-determination I thought I had lost back when I suffered my first significant seizure.

Did Jordan’s story resonate with you? Leave a comment below! We LOVE to hear from our readers. Do you have a story to tell? Contact us!

Mickie’s Miracles is a 501c3 non-profit foundation for the education and awareness of pediatric epilepsy. We run on the donations and support of others, so if you have some time, please consider donating to our cause. Thank you.


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