Epilepsy Awareness Month: Dean’s Blog Post

purple silence the stigma words brain background - Epilepsy Awareness Month

By Dean Kautz

In conjunction with Epilepsy Awareness Month, I was contacted by the Epilepsy Foundation to provide a brief perspective of someone whose spouse has epilepsy.  By way of background, my name is Dean and I have been married to Marcia for just over 40 years.  Our journey with epilepsy began about 35 years ago when Marcia had a grand mal seizure.  

That journey has been difficult many times, when promising medications suddenly lose their effectiveness and break-through seizures occur.  The journey begins anew whenever a change in medication is warranted.  

Epilepsy is a cruel humbler that can easily strip away one’s confidence of ever gaining an upper hand.  Marcia and I share the disappointment when spirit-crushing seizures occur.  In those uncertain times, I have tried to be the certainty that Marcia relies on as we contemplate our next steps.  The moments immediately following a seizure are the most trying for us.  This is when we are most vulnerable and saddened by yet another setback.  

However, that is the time where we focus on defeating epilepsy and not letting epilepsy defeat us. As difficult as our journey has been at times, we know that we are not alone.  We have sought and received great counsel and support from the wonderful staff of the Epilepsy Foundation of Minnesota.  We cannot overstate the importance of having an Epileptologist with whom we are most comfortable.          

It has taken a long time to find the right combination of medicine and neurological support that is agreeable for Marcia while controlling her seizures.  If we experience another setback, we will not let epilepsy take away our confidence or our commitment for a cure.

Marcia is the true hero through this journey.  I am honored to witness her strength-providing perseverance on a daily basis as we travel together.