Family is the answer. I have found nothing without them. They shaped me and they loved me. They are my past present and future. A shoulder to cry on and an ear to whinge in. A source of advice and a source of strength. A reference to where I could be and all I can aim for. A picture of love and happiness.
It all sounds too good to be true right? Wrong. I am not claiming the perfect world, an eden where no interaction is sour and everybody just magically gets along. It’s far from that. It is chaos at times and misery at others. But at the end all of this, it just doesn’t matter because I know, deep within me, all that they have done. Everything I have inflicted on them with decisions once made, and trauma inflicted on them by matters beyond control.
Our relationships have changed to an unrecognisable form, and for this I am thankful. Throughout my life family was always crucial but recognising this has been what has finally brought me to stability (touch wood). They have done nothing but care. Throughout they have changed their lives, fitted their habits and learned and learned and learned with an almost inexplicable veracity.
Sure, they can be a bit overprotective. But really, who can blame them? When I need to get somewhere and can’t make it on public transport, a lift is always there. When I have a bad day, they are always there. When I have a seizure, all is dropped and family is there.
During a seizure they watch me writhe and then slowly sooth me back to consciousness, pulling me back to the real world. This carries over for all elements of my life, when I lose control or something is just to much, it is to them I now turn, invariably. It takes time to accept this, relationships don’t just appear. We all want our independence yes, but sometimes an acceptance that really we don’t have to do it alone is the way to a healthier life.
With epilepsy you need close relationships, people who care. People who will drop everything for you. You always feel it is unfair, unreal, unknown for you, but really what about them? I feel this is the point you are really at peace with epilepsy. When this thought comes to you, what about them? So we look outwards, out to family, their world and our world both become a better place for it.
I’ve lived with parents, grandparents, aunts, in dorms and my own house throughout my journey and yet family is always with me, wherever I go. Yes, I think it’s fair to say some cliché’s really do hold fast, family first.
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