Hello, my name is Amanda Kent and I’m fifteen years old. I believe god gave me epilepsy to show me someone else’s world, to put me in their shoes, and to show me that you have to fight for what you want in life and what’s important to you.
I had my first seizure on September 1, 2012 around 5:30-6 pm in Maine. My mom, my friend, and I were getting ready to go to the mall. My mom and I were arguing about the length of my shorts, so I changed. The last thing I remember is looking in the mirror and saying “let’s go!” The next thing I know I’m in the ambulance and I can’t get up and I’m very groggy.
I started to freak out, I was then told everything will be okay but I just had a seizure. Once I got to the hospital my mom and friend showed up. They said I had a seizure for 45 minutes. It was the scariest thing anyone could ever experience. Let’s fast forward to meeting my doctor, Dr. A!
As we talked about what move to make next, he looked straight into my eyes and said, “You can do anything and everything anyone else can do!” Hey, I believed him. But he didn’t know what he was getting his self into! He calls me his human genuine pig and the toughest patient he’s ever had. He only says this because……..let me say I love research and I do it well! I gave him a huge list of medications I will not take, side effects I will and will not have. He looked at me with this strange look when he read it and responded with “I’m glad you care about what’s going into your body.” They put me on Keppra and I’m still on it.
School has been the toughest for me. I never knew it would be this difficult. I’m a big advocator for my condition. I paid the price for speaking up about it. I got bullied, yelled at, lights flashed in my face, and laughed at. I came home crying every day for months and still won’t leave that school because I want to prove my point that people should know and be educated about epilepsy no matter how much it hurts me! No one understands that as much as I do! Learning the material is so hard for me because I can’t learn it as fast as the other kids, so half the time I’m teaching myself the work because I’m behind. But I won’t give up! I had a seizure in school and if my friend didn’t know I had epilepsy and told the teacher I having a seizure then he would have kept of teaching. My teacher felt so bad that he didn’t see any signs of me having a seizure. I’m called crazy at school because no matter how bad the seizure is or how tired I am I go into school because I value my education so much! I’ve been seizure free for five months now. I’m now fighting to get my drivers permit and to get people educated because this medical condition matters! I thank god that he took me out of reality and gave me epilepsy because now I can help others fight for a change that’s needed so much that people don’t even understand.
Recently, I applied to become the Epilepsy Foundation of Connecticut's Kids Speak Up! Representative. If I am chosen, I will be going to Washington D.C. to meet with our federal legislators and advocate for people with epilepsy.