I’ve heard epileptics talk about having “aura’s prior to a seizure” because they have them prior to a complex partial, tonic-clonic, etc.. This verbiage concerns me just a little because these “aura’s prior to a seizure” are in fact seizures themselves. They are known as simple partial seizures. These seizures occur when there is abnormal electrical activity in one area of the brain. They can be a precursor to another seizure type where the electrical activity spreads to another part or the entire brain. But, they also can happen and stay confined to the region of the brain where they originated.
Simple partials are a primary seizure type for me in that they usually stay in my right temporal lobe and other parts of my brain aren’t affected. I am often asked what it’s like to have one. As you can tell from my articles I’m honest and hold nothing back. However, before going into details I tell them it’s like a bad drug trip without the drugs. That is usually enough to prepare them for the “scary” manifestations that take place. They aren’t scary to me because I am used to them; but to someone who has never experienced it, that’s a different story.
Here are some of the ways they manifest for me:
Ringing and high pitched squeals in my ears (tinnitus)
Male voice saying, “Where we going?”
Male and female voices yelling my name, random words, laughing, screaming and crying
Side note: I try to talk back to them but they don’t respond. One sided conversations and having to get the last word in, how rude.
Christmas presents floating across the room
Aircraft flying in the house
Blood flying from a ceiling fan and then running down a wall
Raining black rain drops in my living room
Fireballs flying through the house
Ladybug like creatures crawling around on the floor
People standing at the end of my bed, in my kitchen and other parts of the house
People melting into the floor (kind of what the old Scooby Doo cartoons look like when they change scenes)
Smelling things burning
Feeling of being pulled up off my bed or out of my chair
Surroundings look extremely bright, distorted, tunnel vision, detached and surreal
Feeling as if the floor is uneven and actually walking in an up and down motion (almost like being on a boat)
Seeing my hands but can’t feel them
Seeing my hands but they look distorted and bigger than they are
Looking in a mirror and my reflection is yellow like someone with jaundice
INVOLUNTARY NERVOUS SYSTEM
Hard to breath like an elephant is on my chest
Adrenaline rushes (like anxiety or panic attacks)
Electric shock feelings around my head
Head pressure (feels like it weighs a ton)
Déja vu (feeling I’ve been somewhere or done something before)
Jamais vu (no recognition of things I’ve done like forgetting how to get home)
This is not an all inclusive list of simple partial manifestations. Everyone’s epilepsy affects them differently. But, I’ll bet all of My Purple Friends can relate to at least one thing on this list; maybe some have experienced most or even all of them. Some of us have them as aura’s and some as a primary seizure type.
I know it’s a few days before Halloween and to non-epileptics this may seem like a holiday themed post, but let me assure you it isn’t. This is our life. Most of us experience these or something close to them frequently. Many of us, myself included, almost daily. I guess you could say we live a Halloween nightmare everyday… But we refuse!
We keep going! We push through! We are not afraid! WE ARE STRONG!!!