Hi I’m Melissa! I got diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 14. I’m 23 now so I’ve lived with epilepsy for for 9 years now.
I have different types of focal seizures, so sometimes I am aware of everything during a seizure, but other times I am unaware of anything that’s going on.
I always knew I wanted to help people, but I have struggled to achieve this with my epilepsy. I can’t drive, so I couldn’t be a paramedic. I looked into going into the armed forces, but again epilepsy meant this was impossible.
"Epilepsy used to hold me back but now I see it as a strength"
I was determined to become a Police officer. I did my research and there are officers with epilepsy. I passed my interview with the Met Police in London, but then had a seizure. You have to go over a year seizure free to be a police officer. They suggested I find an office based role for now, which I did with Greater Manchester Police.
My doctors don’t know what triggers my seizures and although this is hard, I’ve worked hard to look after myself; by exercising, getting enough sleep and reducing alcohol. I’m so excited to start work as a Police officer in a few weeks. I’ve experienced so many setbacks in doing this with my epilepsy but through my hard work and determination I have got the job of my dreams.
Epilepsy used to hold me back but now I see it as a strength, I’m proud of doing what I’ve always wanted whilst having this condition.
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