I declared 2013 the year to overcome, but what does it mean to overcome? The truth is, I don’t really know, but I will share as I learn, and I hope you will do the same.
Yesterday I learned that overcoming means facing multiple fears at the same time: fear of extreme dirtiness, fear of 5K events, and fear of seizures in dangerous public places.
We signed up as a family for the Graffiti Run, which is a fun 5K event where you have loads of colorful chalk-based ‘graffiti’ thrown at you while you run, walk or hula hoop your way through the course. Did I mention I don’t like being dirty, and I am out of shape? These are the small fears though, compared to what happened on Saturday.
The day before the race, I had two distinct and unique types of seizures that I have not had in the past. So my wife and I had a decision to make. Will we allow caution to win the day? I could legitimately have had a significant seizure during the Graffiti Run, with disastrous results. Together, we decided that fun would lead the way.
I ran the race without any seizures, and as a family we had an absolutely amazing time. If we had chosen to be overcome by my seizures, we would have missed the sheer joy, color, exhaustion, bewilderment, and nasty tasting graffiti we all experienced yesterday.
I would be lying if I said it wasn’t stressful, but it was worth the risk. Overcoming always is.
What can you do right now to face multiple fears and overcome in your life?
I loved reading this! It is so encouraging! And you all look as though you had such a brilliant time together! 🙂
One of the biggest problems with a person who has epilepsy is fear! This causes stress and, often , causes more seizures. Okay, so it sounds like a vicious circle, and it is. I remember a neurologist once saying to me: “If someone stresses you out, put a brick through their window!” Okay, so he wasn’t serious but he was making an important point: Don’t let stress stand in the way of what you want to accomplish. Just go for it!!!
…And so I did! I stopped trying to please everyone so that I could be socially accepted, and, apart from anything else, trying to please everybody at the same time was really hard work! This was one of the greatest and most important life-changing decisions I ever made as a person with epilepsy. This was the stress-busting way to go forwards and not remain in an introverted shell for the rest of my life, watching other people enjoy themselves or be successful while I remained on the sidelines as an onlooker.
Obstacles?… Okay, so there will be some. But life is never easy and so they’re just harder to climb over. They take more time, more faith, more confidence, more nerve to negotiate. I guess if you looked backwards and saw some of those hard obstacles you’d already successfully overcome, you’d be surprised, even shocked at what you’d already achieved. Right?…. So use those experiences to overcome other obstacles before you and you will succeed!
Go for it!!!
I was an amazing time. We did have to make a conscious choice to walk away from fear, but we knew (okay, we hoped) it would be worth it. I am still learning to step through the fear, but that is what the overcoming theme is about for me in 2013.
Thanks for the encouragement, and for continuing to share from your life!
Came over from Andi’s. Glad I did! 😉
Welcome Heidi! Thanks for the kind words. Hope to see more of you around here 🙂
Overcoming fear is THE biggest obstacle at this point. My 13 year old son is the one who has epilepsy, and was only diagnosed in April 2012. Twice now we have felt that we had the right medications and we could relax and just live our lives and twice we’ve been disappointed. The last time, on Christmas Day, added a little extra fear for me: Simon had a series of seizures (5-6 in two hours) and he stopped breathing briefly during the second one. Neither of those things had ever happened before. It was only a couple of weeks ago, so I’m still battling with not getting up in the middle of the night to check on him (I do it more often than I should…) but he’s back to school and we’re TRYING to put it all to the side and just keep on keepin’ on.
Thanks for sharing the encouraging words!!
How fun! I wanted to do a color run this year, as it looked like a blast. Great post.
It was spectacular! Likely an annual tradition for our family now. I would encourage it.
Thanks for the encouragement Tammy — that means a lot, especially coming from you.
I’m so glad we decided to do this run. I have to say you impress me — I’m not sure how I would operate day-to-day with the fear you described looming. But honestly, if you guys hadn’t told me of Saturdays incident, I never would have known it was an issue. And I wouldn’t have blamed you or Barbara for being less than upbeat on Sunday.
You handle it all well. 🙂
This was one of the best times I have had in my recent memory, and not likely something I will soon forget. I think everyone in our family (including you and Joanne, our extended family who we love so deeply) had a spectacular time. I want to do this, or something like it, again sooner rather than later.
We have learned over the past few years with Cynthia to compartmentalize our fears about seizures, as part of living in the moment, and now it has extended to me as well. There is opportunity every day to choose paranoia, or to live our lives in a place of faith and trust. The counter-balance, of course, is that we should not be “crazy Christians” who act as though epilepsy is not a challenge in our family life.
Thanks for the encouragement about handling well Cassie!
I will be praying for you and Simon. If you ever need another person to talk to, reach out to me. I am almost always awake, so feel free to comment here. You can also find me on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/chris.morris.752861, so this brings us a little closer to real-life friends. From there, you can even PM me and we can chat live.
I know the terror that comes from multiple seizures and new seizures with a child. My daughter has been hospitalized a few times, and each time it’s terrible. It’s like the idea of ‘normal’ keeps getting redefined after each seizure episode, and we can never get comfortable again.
Awesome Chris. I don’t know if I would be as courageous. I think my fear would be more along the lines of passing out before the finish. I love the pix! It tells the story. You guys had an amazing time and made awesome family members.
It’s one of those things that in 10 or 20 years your kids will say remember when we all did that 5K and people threw chalk at us? Wow that was fun.
That’s what it’s all about!
family memories! Sorry! I’m sure your members are awesome too 🙂
To be fair, it was a 5K run walk or hula hoop, not a 5K run. Almost anyone can walk 3 miles. 🙂
It was a good opportunity for us to jump out in front of our fears and live our lives for sure!
What an example for your children! And beautiful memories to boot, thanks for sharing
Thanks for the encouragement, and for stopping by!