December 31, 2007

Community Makes Us Stronger!

Socialization helps each of us cope. Epilepsy is a condition poorly understood or accepted by the general public.If we are going to change the perceptions others have of us and of our condition, then we have to be willing to work out. We have to be willing to share information, admit to others that we have this thing, and allow an opening for conversation to take place. Share what you know. Share your feelings, your experiences, your fears. Frustrations, triggers, flash-points, too. Each of these things will help add to another person's knowledge and understanding of E.

Be willing to reach out to someone else. I know I have appreciated it when others have reached out to me. Let me offer an example: an anonymous note I got about a factual error in a post of mine. If the person had included a name I could thank them properly. Even though I thought I had researched my piece well, I was apparently off the mark about a biographical detail in the life of Harry Laughlin. He was a eugenicist whom we can credit with making life a bit more difficult for all types of disabled. He was diagnosed with E. as an adult. I wrote that he had children, and my unknown friend, pointed out that this was not the case. I reexamined my work, revisited my research, and discovered that I Got It Wrong!!! So, rather than allowing me to continue to look foolish, my unknown benefactor took pity and gave me a word. Thank-you, very much, whoever you are.

Community. It is that thing that allows each of us to feel cared for and about. It affords us bravery and confidence. We have to engage it, instead of staying away from it.

Happy New Year and here's wishing each of you less frustration and many fewer seizures in 2008!