My Seizure-Free Year

Back in January of 2015, I had one of the worst seizures of my life. And I happened to have it outside next to traffic on a pretty busy roadway here, not too far from my apartment.

(I was on my way to get cake, interestingly enough, from a hospital. There’s a hospital here with a little cafe inside that makes GREAT cake…)

cake and icecream
Also expensive ice cream. It is not the hospital I go to for hospitaling.

After that seizure, I started seeing a new doctor. We discovered that between the time of my first seizure here in 2011 and January 2015, they had started importing zonicimide/Zonegran, a medication I had taken with Lamictal while I lived in the USA. The four years in Thailand up to that point, I had only been taking Lamictal, because that’s all I thought they had. I hadn’t thought to ask if they’d begun importing Zonegran, and none of the doctors would have thought to mention it, I guess.

So, January 2015, I get put back on Zonegran and Lamictal together. I was on this in the US and would still have the occasional seizure. All sorts of factors could be at play here… I can’t say, since I’ve been sleep deprived here, too, and still managed to make my year, but whatever it was, it’s worked.

I’m a year seizure free. For the first time since I was 15. Or, if you count the “fainting” that started at 11, which was probably drop attacks, since then. So a long damn time. I’m 30 years old, so we’re talking a good chunk of my life. And I’ve finally hit a full year.

Like I said at the six-month post, that’s not to say I wasn’t scared a few times. Even last week, god last week. I was up 30 hours Monday before I finally crashed into bed and slept for 12. I’ve had the doom feeling between my shoulder blades. I’ve felt the tingling in my wrists. Seen the sparkling bubble illusions. Various things that can be precursors to seizures. But every time I managed to sit down, calm myself, and not freak out.

I’m so happy.

At the six-month mark I decided that I was going to get a tattoo in celebration if I made a full year. I jumped the gun by two days because that day was open in the guy’s calendar, but I’m really pleased with the work.

I went with a dragon, which is generally considered a protective spirit. Made it somewhere between the Asian and Western dragon styles, to symbolize my current home and my birth home. The lightning should be obvious. And the purple is for the standard epilepsy awareness color … also, I really like purple. So it works.

during work
I managed to stay tough for 3.5 hours, then cried a few tears and was sprayed with numbing spray. If I do it again, pride be dammed, I want spray from the get go.

2015 wasn’t perfect. There were a lot of problems in my life and in the world. But there were also triumphs. This was a bit of both. Problem and triumph.

Which I celebrate with this freaking awesome lightning dragon.

Feels a little like a sunburn, so I went to the salon and had them wash my hair while I was on my side so I didn’t have to deal with it.

All good until tomorrow, when it starts the itching stage. At which point I begin breaking things. And maybe people. Until then, and after then, hopefully no seizures. And no seizures until 2017. And then none until 2018! AND NONE UNTIL 2019! ETC ETC ETC!!!

That would just be the best.

(I had the tattoo done at Golden Needle Tattoo in Phuket Town. They’re great, if anyone is in the area and interested.)


3 thoughts on “My Seizure-Free Year

  1. Hello, I live in Seraphi and recently found out I have epilepsy. I was prescribed Depakine Chrono 500 twice a day and thinking of the alternatives.

    Would you tell me the cost of Lamictal? Have you had any trouble getting it in pharmacies?

    Thank you very much and I hope you are well.


    Great tattoo!

    1. Saraphi? Changmai? I’m not sure exactly how much it would cost for you. I buy three months of Lamictal and Zonegran at a time – 150 2X Lamictal and 100 2X Zonegran for 90 days – and pay around 21000 baht. It has been SO long since I bought just Lamictal I can’t remember how much it is! I want to say 4000ish a month, but I might be wrong. And no, I’ve never had the slightest problem getting Lamictal here. My only sadness would be that it’s in 50mg dosages, which gets frustrating when I KNOW they make 150 mg pills! Taking 6 pills a day when I could be taking 2! 555+ But, I’m just happy they have it.

      Now, Zonegran only recently came to my area, and it is a little harder to get because not as many people take it. So I can get an RX for it for 3 months, but they might only be able to give me one month from what they have on-hand and then an IOU to pick the rest up a week or two later when they get the rest of the order in.

      I’ll also say, I only go to the government hospital. My insurance is through this, so this means I never go anywhere else. When I first hit the country, I checked with Bangkok Hospital, and they also had Lamictal, but I’ve never actually bought it there. I couldn’t tell you what the pricing was, but I guarantee you it’s more expensive. EVERYTHING is more expensive there. It’s worth waiting just a little longer going to one of the government hospitals.

      (Thank you!)

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