Christina’s Story

My seizures started at about the age of two, but were not diagnosed until I had a grand mal seizure in the classroom at the age of 8. Over the years, they increased and spread over the majority of my brain.

At the age of 19, back in 1990 while I was in college, I was offered a frontal lobectomy surgery on the side of my brain that had the grand mal and loss of consciousness seizures. My odds at the time were 1:3 of coming out of the surgery alive and aware (not brain dead or dead). I could still then continue to have small seizures and auras because they came from the other side of my brain and that side could continue to get worse. I took off two semesters from college and had the surgery.

I started having Migraine headaches at about the age of 30. They would come in stages. I would not have any for a week and then I would be bedridden for 3 days straight. Topiramate (Topamax) was prescribed to me and that seemed to help decrease the Migraines and it is used for seizure control. After about 8 years, my Migraine quantities decreased, so the Topiramate (Topamax) was slowly removed. I did continue to have small seizures and auras on the minimum and eventually without any seizure medication. I didn’t have a grand mal or loss of consciousness seizure for over 25 years.

In December 2016, just after Christmas, I was in a mall returning some gifts with my daughter and had a grand mal seizure. Since that time, I have been put back on Topiramate (Topamax) up to 200 mg a day and now that has been removed and I am on Zonisamide (Zonegran) 175 mg a day because of the increase in both seizures and Migraines.

I now have different kinds of auras before my grand mal seizures and I now have two additional new types of Migraines, optical and aphasia. I can show that living with Epilepsy is what you make of it, even as a single parent:

I have a Bachelor’s degree in Information Technology, an Associate’s degree in Business, and a diploma in Literature.

I have full-time employment in Office Management in a healthcare setting.

I have two published books, with more in the coming.

I have two grown children: one in college to become a CPA (Certified Public Accountant) and the other in the Army as a CBRN (Chemical Biological, Radiological, Nuclear) Specialist.

I teach Adult Education classes part-time.

I volunteer with my self-trained therapy dog in nursing homes and donate my knitting projects to the less fortunate like foster homes, cancer centers, homeless shelters, etc.