Answering His Own Question

IMG_2913“It’s almost your big day,” we told him.

Edgar looked up and replied, “My birthday?”

“No, not your birthday.  That’s this summer.  Your one-year anniversary being seizure-free!  January 28th!”

And instead of a celebratory beam or an exuberant dance in response to this news, Edgar looked worried and earnestly entreated, “What if I can’t do it?”

What if he can’t do it?

Our quick response was a chirpy and upbeat, “Well, we would just start counting again.”

And of course we would.

But his question speaks to how he sees his seizure-control–as an accomplishment, something at which he is working.  Probably not unlike the way his neurologist sees this journey, that a seven-year-old can view it the same way without any prompting from us took our collective breath away.  For us, Edgar’s being seizure-free for almost a year now is equal parts excellent medical care peppered with good luck, the belief that he will be seizure-free, and all the love in the world.  We have never presented this to him as something that required his attention, his hard work.  Just as he had no responsibility in his seizures’ arrival, we never saw him as needing to have any responsibility in their disappearance.

Yet that’s how he sees it.  And of course he is right.  Just like any other condition, the patient’s attitude and effort play a significant role–even a seven-year-old patient’s.

Edgar is not leaving this one to chance.  He is putting in the requisite effort.  He is doing his part.

And all the while he is teaching us what we need to know–about himself, about epilepsy, about being a fighter.

What if he can’t do it? 

If this represents the strength of his instincts, his ability to persevere at seven, well . . . something tells me there is nothing he can’t do.

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3 thoughts on “Answering His Own Question

  1. “Pick yourself up, dust yourself off, and start all over again….” Something tells me Edgar’s dance to this would be delightful.
    Peace,

  2. Interesting blog post – I had a placement in an epilepsy clinic a a few months ago and the stories of the varying patients showed such an array of ways that people deal with the condition, some more positive and determined than others – and I completely admire yours and Edgar’s attitudes in approaching his epilepsy.
    Sincerely best of luck to Edgar and yourselves on reaching your milestone!

  3. Edgar, you’ve got this!! Whenever you feel unsure, just remember what Christopher Robin told Winnie the Pooh: “You’re braver than you believe, and stronger than you seem, and smarter than you think.”

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