This post is part of the Epilepsy Blog Relay™. Follow along all month!
Hello to all new readers- I hope you are enjoying our November Epilepsy Blog Relay here on Living Well With Epilepsy. I hope you find it as inspiring as I do every day, every time! I am a regular writer here on Living Well, and have so much to share on my social medias.
A Brief Backstory
I’m Emily and I am an aspiring Writer from the UK, and I have Epilepsy. My seizures started (knowingly), when I was around 10, and I am the first person in my family to have Epilepsy. I had Absence Seizures as a child, and I was known as The Little Daydreamer for years and years! I quite liked it, as it was unique and was really a great description of me. I have always been very focused on journaling, and I found comfort in dreaming.
It was all fun and games until diagnosis. I started onto some medication and it worked quite well. But a few years later, these seizures developed into more complexed types of Epilepsy including Generalized Tonic Clonic Seizures. It wasn’t fun being a daydreamer anymore.
I work, full time, and I have always tried my best to do things that I want to with regards to work. I have never wanted to live a life controlled by Epilepsy, I have always wanted to work, own a house, start a family, go out. I have dreams but haven’t quite found the way to make it as a professional writer enough to be able to do it full time, but I will continue doing what I love.
Epilepsy sure does get in the way, but whether or not you let it hold you back is a different story.
Tech and Innovation with Epilepsy
Immediately after my diagnosis in 2006/2007, I was no longer able to have a bath. I had to be supervised whilst swimming. I was no longer allowed on rides. And worst of all, I had daily medication. For peace of mind this year after having problems with my old smart watch, my Husband and my Mum invested in the Empatica Embrace2 watch. The delivery was fast too, it only took a few days to get to England. This is not a paid advertisement.
I was reluctant to purchase the Embrace2 at first because of my initial experience with a smart watch for my Epilepsy. But I have found it has been the best investment yet. Although I am married, and we have a house of our own, you never stop being your parents babies-no matter how old. My Embrace2 helps not only my parents feel more at ease, but my husband, Daniel and his parents too, are comforted by knowing they’ll be alerted when a possible generalized tonic-clonic seizure occurs. This watch has also allowed me to still feel like I have my independence whilst still having people there to care for me. And it gives me hope that when we do have a family in the future, everyone will be safe.
Look and Feel
The watch comes in different colours. I have the pink one as I like bright colours. The colour helps it stand out but in a fashionable way, not in a ‘Hello look at me I have a disability’ kind of way.
Pairs with Your Tech
The watch also works alongside smart technology, so mine is paired to my iPhone. A paired device is needed, but it doesn’t have to be a smartphone–so don’t worry! As long as your phone or tablet is connected to the internet, you’ll be OK. My Embrace2 uses Bluetooth to connect to my phone. It was honestly the easiest thing to set up and I am not great when it comes to setting things up, Dan usually has to help me out. When the watch detects a possible convulsive seizure, it sends the data via an app, which then sends out text messages and calls to your selected caregivers.
It is so dainty, and it communicates with you using its LED lights. A red X appears when Embrace is disconnected from your phone. This lets you, or if you have a child wearing the watch, know that they should move closer to the phone or connect to internet. The watch is also fast charging and it has a 48 hour battery life. I charge mine when I have someone around because I know either way that I am safe.
Emily’s Seizures on Embrace2
Embrace has been an invaluable companion for me living with epilepsy, and it gives parents and loved ones reassurance, as well as yourself.
The biggest change in my life is that those that care about me now feel much more comfortable allowing me to be by myself, knowing that if I have a seizure they know that they will be alerted and will know where I am with his GPS smart technology. They have more peace of mind while I’m sleeping, at work, walking. I don’t think about it much, but it’s become part of my everyday life now. I know that if something happens, I will be OK. I am lucky as I do have an Aura before my seizures but if I happen to have back to back seizures, then the watch is even more helpful. It stores all the data in the app and that is extra helpful if you have bad memory from seizures.
A week or so after my Embrace was set up and had started recording my activity, I happened to have an appointment and I could show my Specialist Nurse the Embrace. She was so happy about this device. I was able to show her my seizure activity, and how long they had lasted. It is equally a diary for me.
The Embrace2 is great at allowing me to workout safely and effectively, whilst equally keeping me safe. I love to do Yoga and Pilates, as well as go on walks. You can carrying on doing what you love with peace of mind for you and your loved ones.
Along with eating properly, keeping hydrated and getting enough sleep, journaling is key to a healthy lifestyle. With the Embrace2 mate app, you can monitor your sleep and identify how many times you awaken in the night and what disturbed sleep you are getting. It also monitors how much walking, running and general activity you are getting and this encourages me to keep fit more than I was before.
I highly recommend the Embrace2 watch. It has genuinely saved my life and helped my love ones no end. The funky features and the freedom it gives me, all help me keep not only a monitor on my seizures, but encouragement to stay on track with my healthy lifestyle.
This is not a paid advertisement.
NEXT UP: Be sure to check out the next post tomorrow at https://livingwellwithepilepsy.com.
25 yr old monthly columnist on Living Well with Epilepsy. Full time worker of NHS England.
Emily’s Perspective is a snapshot of what life is like living with Epilepsy. I was diagnosed with Epilepsy at the age of 10.
Based in UK.