Elyssa’s Story

I want to be an inspiration to others

At the age that most teenagers start to drive, I had my first seizure. I had started developing epilepsy and did not know my journey would start when most students start being more independent. Almost seven years ago I was diagnosed with epilepsy and like most others of the 1/26 and the families did not know about my condition. Around three years ago after high school, I found the epilepsy expo at Disneyland. We attended as a family and I felt connected to others with epilepsy and found many online support groups including other social media pages such as CURE Epilepsy. The passing of Cameron Boyce really affected me as we are the same age and I was a fan of his work. After the event, I became active in advocating and speaking about epilepsy. This summer I was a camp counselor at Camp Achieve which is a camp for kids with epilepsy. Recently I had a seizure after being controlled for three years due to missed medication. It was very scary to return to my job at Starbucks. I went back to show others and prove to myself that no matter how hard things seem I have to move forward and not give up. As Miguel Cervantes says ” I am not throwing away my shot at epilepsy”. I still have a long way to go, but every day I am learning more about epilepsy and how I can live a fulfilled and happy life. I enjoy learning from CURE Epilepsy and hearing how others live with epilepsy as they share their stories. I want to be an inspiration to others to fight and not give up.