I know that my last blog was: Tips for Staying Safe in Heatwaves and I follow the tips strictly, but when I wrote the blog I wasn’t expecting the heat wave to last so long, and with each passing day of this warmth, I find myself building with tension and anxiety fearing that I may become unwell if the temperature doesn’t soon begin to cool.
I don’t want to complain about the nice weather, it brings us together and people of all ages are appearing to have a wonderful time in sun.
Have you ever noticed how the heat in the UK always seems different to abroad? I have been to places like the Mediterranean and Australia and as I have exited the plane the warmth embraces you. At home it seems so much more stifling, and as a country we don’t seem to be equipped for the heat either – or any extreme weathers we are used to receiving such a mixed bag. I think this may be part of the reason why I find heatwaves here so difficult.
I have been seizure free for over five years and naturally I’d like it to remain that way. My triggers are normally from sleep deprivation and stress and the fact that I haven’t slept properly since the heat wave began is starting to make me just a little bit anxious.
I know that I am not the only person who is currently feeling this way and I know what I have to do. I have to take it easy, keep doing the good things; i.e. drink plenty, get rest whenever I can, keep as cool as possible, and hardest but most important thing, is to try to take my mind off things remind myself that everything will be fine and that this is Britain, the heat wave will be gone soon – hopefully.
My heart also goes out to everyone who has been unwell with epilepsy during this weather, I have been there, I know how horrible it is, and I think you’re doing great.
If anyone else is feeling anxious you’re welcome to send me a message,
Thanks for reading,
I can’t be the only one that has a love hate relationship when it comes to summer and hot weather. You want to be outside enjoying yourself, but you overheat too quickly. You spend most of the day walking around like a zombie after been awake all night, and your are either coping with auras and seizures or worried that due to the heat something is bound to appear soon. Then you worry about worrying – that awful cycle.
I used to always dread summer, and it would be a time where my health would decline. Thankfully, the last few summers have been good and here are 5 tips that I follow.
I hope these help, even now I am learning more things to help me stay protected from the heat.
This is a really important tip. The moment you feel thirsty grab a cold drink. Avoid teas and coffees and energy drinks as the high caffeine content may dehydrate you.
I have bought myself a glass drinking bottle, and it is always in the fridge with lovely cold water waiting for me, and if I’m going out I can take it with me.
Apply plenty of sun cream
You may think this sounds obvious, but it’s surprising how many people don’t bother. I will also share this tip I recently learnt. When buying sun cream check the UVA & UVB star rating as well as the SPF. As we know, UVA & UVB protection blocks the harmful rays from the sun, so if your sun creams UVA & UVB rating is low it’s not protecting you from the harmful rays. If you’re worried that good sun cream will be expensive, it won’t. I bought a SPF50 sun cream with a UVA star rating of 5 (the best) for £1.50.
It’s also useful to renew sun creams every year, to make sure they are working their best.
Head for shade
When out and about be mindful of how long you are staying in the sun, especially during the middle of the day. Don’t push yourself if you start to feeling hot or tired and take a break and relax in the shade.
Invest in a fan
It’s never a good thing when your sleep gets interrupted because of humid nights. It’s important that we get our rest! Fans can be an excellent solution to this problem. Tower fans are usually good as they are not pushing hot air around, and they are not too expensive.
Last but not least, relax! One of the worse things that you can do in hot weather is exhaust yourself. Its only natural that you are going to have busy schedules, and that combined with hot weather can be a dangerous mix, especially if sleep has been disturbed during the night. The most important thing you can do is recognise when you are feeling a little depleted and take a break, head for shade and have a drink.
Hello, happy father’s day everyone! Today I have decided to talk about my dad.
There is no mistake that everyone in my family was effected when I was first diagnosed with epilepsy, but for my Dad I think it was a little different. I saw a type of fear in his eyes, I was his only daughter and up until that point he had been able to protect me from everything I had feared, and now I was facing something massive that neither of us could control.
I know my parents didn’t have a clue what was happening when I had my first seizure at 14. As I have mentioned in a previous post, my dad noticed that my lips went blue straight after I fell unconscious, believing that I was choking he put his finger in my mouth a bid to clear my airways. This is when the seizure began. Obviously I bit his finger and he needed stitches. I was horrified when I discovered what happened – probably more than I was about the seizure. (note: don’t put fingers etc. in people’s mouths when they are have a seizure, you’ll be sorry)
Over the years my dad has been a huge support to me from being; my taxi, my counsellor, my mentor, my mechanic, my handyman, my friend, my father. There is no one quite like him. He will do the utmost to support his family. He has always put my health and wellbeing as a high priory, something which can hard to recognise as a teenager, but today with controlled epilepsy I cannot help but look to
my Dad and thank him for everything, as I know I wouldn’t be where I am today without his love and support.
As I have mentioned in previous posts, a few years ago I was feeling a little isolated with regards to my epilepsy.
In a bid to see how achievable a full and exciting life can be, I decided to Google celebrities who had been dealt the same hand as myself. I was a little reluctant to do so, afraid of what I may find. Many people with epilepsy have a certain stigma attached to them, in that they may not be as intelligent as others – which we all know is a myth, or worse, that epilepsy has connections with madness, an even older myth.
I have overheard conversations of people discussing how they believe epilepsy is connected with insanity. It really hurts to listen to it, knowing that they couldn’t be more wrong. This was one of the reasons that I was a little afraid to research this topic. I was expecting a tiny list, where celebrities of the past were too afraid to be open about their diagnosis.
You can only imagine my amazement when I discovered the full list of famous people with epilepsy throughout history. It’s a list that includes names of leaders, inventors, writers, artists and musicians. Many of whom I had admired all my life.
I have compiled a list of their names and here it is, dating from 500BC to the present day:
Pythagoras (570BC – 495BC)
Socrates (470BC – 399BC)
Aristotle (384BC – 322BC)
Alexander the Great (356BC – 323BC)
Julius Caesar (100BC – 44BC)
Alfred the Great (849 – 899)
Michelangelo (1475 – 1519)
Leonardo Da Vinci (1452 – 1519)
Martin Luther (1483-1546)
Charles V of Spain (1500 – 1558)
Louis XIII of France (1601 – 1643)
Sir Isaac Newton (1643-1727)
George Frederick Handel (1685 – 1759)
Peter the Great (1672 – 1725)
James Madison (1751 – 1836) 4th U.S. President in 1816 potentially he had epilepsy suffering from attacks which were similar, Madison wrote that he had “a constitutional tendency to sudden attacks somewhat resembling epilepsy which suspended all intellectual function…. They continued throughout my life with prolonged intensity”
Paul I Russia (1754 – 1801)
Sir Walter Scott (1771 – 1832)
Nicolo Paganini (1782 – 1840)
Lord Byron (1788 – 1824)
Hector Berlioz (1803 – 1869)
Edgar Allan Poe (1809 – 1849)
Robert Schuman (1810 – 1856)
Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870)
Fyoder Mikhaylovich Dostoyevsky (1821 – 1881)
Lewis Carroll (1832 – 1898)
Alfred Nobel (1833 – 1896)
Peter Tchaikovsky (1840 – 1893)
Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890)
Theodore Roosevelt (1858 – 1919)
Agatha Christie (1890 – 1976)
Bud Abbott (1895 – 1974)
George Gershwin (1898 – 1937)
Truman Capote (1924 – 1984)
Richard Burton (1925 – 1984)
Neil Young (1945-)
Danny Glover (1947-) Actor
Margaux Hemmingway (1955-1996)
Hugo Weaving (1960-)
Susan Boyle (1961-)
Lil Wayne (1982-)
Dai Greene (1986-)
Next time when you hear someone say something a little in insensitive or you have a day where you feel that nothing is possible, just remember this list of people who achieved amazing things despite their medical issues and ignored what others must have said to them.
Some used their experiences to their advantages and incorporated it into their writing giving us famous and now beloved works.
I do not doubt that throughout history having epilepsy must have been hugely concerning especially without the medical knowledge and medication that we have today.
This only in-grains my belief that if they could tackle life and still achieve their dreams, so can we.
Over the past few days I have heard and read hundred stories relating to other people’s 2017, each one unique to the individual.
For me, my past year has been one of personal growth. Never in one year have I learnt more about myself, and this New Year’s Day is unusual as for the first time I am looking forward to the year ahead rather than dreading it.
This journey of self- growth began on New Year’s 2017. I was recently out of work and gloomily looking toward January. No one likes being unemployed, and other people’s advice didn’t help my situation. They insisted that careers and money were paramount and that’s what I should be perusing. I didn’t completly disagree with them, but they wanted me to walk straight into another career that I was unhappy with. Inside, I knew I wanted to help people, as I was disappointed by my last job, they’d received the news of my epilepsy poorly even when I explained it wasn’t an issue. It had been the first job I’d had since my epilepsy was fully controlled, I never thought it would be and an issue, I could even drive! So, I was disappointed to find that other people’s lack of education was still making me sad. I thought about everyone else who must be experiencing the same every single day – or worse.
This was my first inspiration to help others. I wanted to do something to help, but I wasn’t sure what.
By the February, I had set up my Blog, ArdentJourneys and became a volunteer with Epilepsy Action, all with the aim to help, inspire and to raise awareness about epilepsy.
From that time, I began to listen to myself and set my own goals that I wanted to achieve rather than society. Without question, during 2017, I have been truly happy and content within myself and that has been a huge accomplishment, and I’ve greatly enjoyed meeting and networking with so many lovely new people.
I have been overwhelmed by the response I have received in 2017 for my humble blog, thank you to every one for your support. Thank you to everyone who has taken the time to read my posts, follow me, and email me, it means so much!