Epilepsy is a condition that can affect anyone, at any age. 5 out of every 100 people will have seizures in their lifetimes. This week in Eye on Health, Carla Burbidge talks to a young woman who is living with epilepsy.
22 year old Shelby Gantzer plans to be an elementary teacher, but this past year she was forced to cut-back her college schedule. It was just a year ago, she had her first seizure.
Shelby Gantzer " I went to class and I woke up on a stretcher"
Eventually she was diagnosed with epilepsy, she has spent time at epilepsy centers in Mayo and the University of Minnesota. Shelby says every patient is different, so the doctors are still working out her medications and dosages. Hopefully, one day they'll have it controlled better.
Shelby "At first I was in denial, and then depressed, and then embarrassed"
Shelby says she now realizes she is the same person she was before, she is learning to live with epilepsy. Not being able to drive is a drawback though.
Shelby "always have to rely on my friends"
Jordan Creamer is the bright spot in Shelby's life this past year. Jordan is an EMT, on his to becoming a paramedic. He was there when Shelby had her first seizure.
Jordon Creamer "she was talking to her mom, she didn't remember much, but the cute guy"
Three months later, Shelby was in the E-R, and there was Jordon again. Soon they were dating.
(he's become my best friend)
a best friend who's handy to have around, when she has a seizure. Certainly, a lot has changed since her diagnosis, but Shelby is now holding down a job, and plans to return to college. She's moving forward, and glad to have Jordan by her side. For Eye on Health, I'm Carla Burbidge