This post is part of the Epilepsy Blog Relay™ which will run from June 1 to June 30, 2017. Follow along!
Haruki Murakami once said, “When you come out of the storm you won’t be the same person that walked in after.” When I was diagnosed with Epilepsy at the age of six, my life transformed into a monsoon. I started having trouble socially, academically, and physically. It seemed as if my world was in a downward spiral until I was introduced to softball. That is where I learned that giving up was never an option.
Growing up I was an outgoing and troublemaking child. When I was prescribed my medication, the side effects made me a different person. At times my medication would cause me to be confused, which also caused me to urinate on myself. I remember being so upset; I was a twelve-year-old girl and knew that not everyone knew my story. I was always embarrassed and self-conscious around people because I would feel like the odd one out. If my shyness wasn’t bad enough, my grades were also not as good as I would have liked them to be.
I was a child that enjoyed learning something new every day. I would always participate in class, raising my hand to share my answers until the moment I started struggling to understand what was being taught. I remember going home and my parents would ask me what we learned in school that day, but my memory was always hazy and I just couldn’t remember. It was stressful when it came time to take a test. No matter how hard I worked, I still received a low grade. There were only two subjects I did well in and they were art and music.
Art and music were my two favorite subjects in elementary school. What I loved most was that we had the choice to take PE or not. I was not into sports growing up, so not being active and the effects of the medication, had bad effects on my health. I had gained almost twenty-five pounds in two years. I remember no matter how much I ate I never seemed to feel full. My Neurologist became worried about the situation and recommended I go see a cardiologist. That was the moment my life went from shadow to light.
I will never forget the saying my mom continues to tell me, “Everything happens for a reason.” After the doctor performed a few tests on me, he told my parents that I needed to lose weight to avoid heart issues. My doctor said the only way to fix this was to start eating better and become more active. A few weeks later my parents decided to sign me up to play softball for an NYS league. I fell in love with the sport and still continue to play till this day.
It has been seven years since I started playing softball and I must say it has impacted my life in many ways. Thanks to softball I have been seizure free for seven years and med free for three years. After my doctor took me off my medication my senior year of high school I started getting better grades in school and decided I wanted to go to college to be a teacher.
A few things that run through my mind every time I am on the field are, “If I would have never started playing softball would I have all the friends I have today?” “Would I be in college playing for my dream team?” Even if my questions could not be answered, I cannot be more thankful for the life I have today. That is how I learned quitting is never an option in sports and in life. I know that if I work hard and believe strong enough, I can accomplish all my goals and dreams.
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