Linday's story, Alphabet Soup

Hi, my name is Lindsay and I'm 13 years old. I love to play with my kitty, to use the Internet, and to read. 

When I was a baby, the doctors suspected that something was wrong, so I had a bunch of tests.  I had a CAT scan, an MRI and two EEGs.  Doesn't that sound like alphabet soup? The doctors said that I might have problems in about 10 years, they...  Well read this and you'll find out!

What I'm about to tell you is true. It all began during Spring break of '98.  I was sitting down being myself when all of a sudden I wasn't aware of anything.  I sat there staring, and I couldn't even say what I was staring at. I just don't remember.  I do remember that I walked to the kitchen, though. My mom told me that when she looked at me she could tell I was spacing out. She said that she made funny faces, but I don't remember any part of it.  I didn't move.  I didn't even see her. In fact, she told me that I seemed to be staring right through her.  At first she thought I was joking, and then she got scared. Mom didn't know what was happening, and of course, neither did I. 

When she called the advice nurse, the nurse told her to bring me to the Emergency Room (ER). That's when I blinked and complained that I was tired. I guess I was starting to come back out of this fog I seemed to have gotten lost in. My mom took me to my room and started to put my shoes on. When I asked what she was doing and where we were going, she told me that we were going to the doctor's office and I cried, "I don't want to go"! I was scared.  I closed my eyes, but my mom told me to keep them open. "The advice nurse said you're not supposed to go to sleep."  My eyes were still closed. Though she and my big sis tried to keep me from sleeping,  I just couldn't stay awake. 

Somehow my mom and dad got me in the car and took me to the ER. That was a surprise to me, since my mom had told me that we  were going to the doctor's office. When we got there, I was put in bed with a blanket over me, and a doctor came and put a bracelet on my wrist after about half-an-hour. Then came the needle. The doctor said I needed a blood test, and after that was done, he told me that I had had a seizure.  Right then, my life changed. 

Since then, I have to go to the doctor to get more blood tests every time we change the dose of the medicine I take to prevent the seizures, or whenever I need to change medicines.  Believe me, I hate blood tests!  I don't go to the doctor as much as I used to, luckily, but I still go.

The bad news is that I may continue to have seizures forever, though of course not all of the time. The good news is that I might outgrow them and if that happens, then I'll be able to drive. Of course if you have a seizure problem you just can't predict when one of them will occur, so driving would be pretty dangerous.

It really bothers me when people constantly ask me if I've taken my medicine. Trust me, you'd hate it, too.

I have had seizures for over a year now and believe me, they don't stop me from doing things I normally would do.  I am not very different from you.  Having seizures doesn't mean that I act or look different than other kids.  It doesn't mean that I'm dumb or stupid, either.  So if you know someone who has the same type of medical problem (and lots of kids do), ask them about it. Don't be afraid to include them in games, to invite them over to play, and to tell them your secrets. That's what friendship's all about.

Well, that's my real life story.  You might want to visit some pages to make sense of the alphabet soup you read at the very beginning.

CAT scan

To the frog ponds
To write to Lindsay
To the site map

Joan Fleitas, Ed.D., R.N.
Associate Professor of Nursing, Fairfield University
Fairfield, Connecticut 06430

Last updated: April 25, 2002