Hello, I'm Emma Taylor. I'm 17 and a Junior at Seton Catholic Central, but my story starts when I was 13 and in 8th grade. My entire life I've played competitive sports and participated in most of the events my school offers. You could say I'm an average teenager, but I'm ready for that to change.
On July 2, 2015 my family and I made the trip down to Hawaii to visit my Aunt and Uncle. On July 3, I woke up in the emergency room in Honolulu. I had my first grand mal seizure that we know of. At about three in the morning, my brother saw me shaking and said something to my family. My mother yelled to my uncle to call 911 but the only phone that was close was locked. He picked me up and we drove to the hospital. When I regained consciousness I didn't know where I was and why my Uncle was there. After my family explained what happened, I was moved to the local children's hospital by ambulance. I was in the hospital until July 4th when they discharged me just in time for great fireworks with my Aunt and Uncle.
When I came back to New York, I got a doctor in Rochester. It took months to find the location where my epilepsy is located. The news that I have epilepsy was heart breaking to my family but we had to learn to adapt to the situation. For me, this situation was a new door opening in my life. It was a chance to change myself and everything I can. I've definitely had my ups and downs since I started having seizures. My school life has gotten harder and some of the activities I do have gotten more difficult to participate in.
With all the struggles that have been presented since the start of 8th grade, I've found out who is really there for me, so this has been a great learning experience. The good things that have come through my epilepsy make me very thankful for my friends, family and the seizure in Hawaii. The negatives have changed the way I look at everything, it changed my perspective on the seizures. It motivates me to do better and to prove to people that I can excel at activities and sports even though I have seizures.
Before my seizure I knew very little about seizures. Epilepsy is a serious thing that effects millions of people. 1 in 26 Americans will develop epilepsy in their lifetime. Two-thirds of people diagnosed have no known cause. I've had a much larger interest in learning more about epilepsy since the first known seizure. People should know more about seizures or at least what to do it you see someone having one. My school didn't have a seizure plan until I started having seizures. Epilepsy is a common thing but is not well known to society.