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I was diagnosed with epilepsy when I was 12 years old. My type of epilepsy involves tonic-clonic seizures, where I lose consciousness and experience convulsions. Epilepsy is not just about seizures though, it's a challenging condition to live with daily, as I have to juggle the difficult side effects of my anti-epileptic medication whilst trying to maintain as normal a life as possible. There is also a tremendous emotional strain that comes with having this condition, such as the fear that I will have a seizure in a dangerous place and seriously injure myself. Epilepsy is often described as an "invisible" disability. There is not enough awareness of it out there in the public domain, which often leads to common misconceptions.
This year marks the 10th anniversary of Purple Day, a globally recognised day for epilepsy awareness, with purple being the colour representing epilepsy. This year, it falls on Monday 26th March. I've organised various fun activities at my office, but what I ask you all is quite simple: please wear purple on Purple Day to stand with those who live with epilepsy; take a selfie of you wearing something purple and tweet it or share it on Facebook using #PurpleDay - let's get this trending! While you're at it, I would be very grateful if you could donate some money to Epilepsy Scotland who provide support for those living with epilepsy in Scotland and who have supported me personally - it'll be like a global dress-down day for charity, but all of us wearing purple to raise awareness of epilepsy!
I have epilepsy, but epilepsy doesn't have me!
(Donating through JustGiving is simple, fast and totally secure. Your details are safe with JustGiving - they'll never sell them on or send unwanted emails. Once you donate, they'll send your money directly to the charity. So it's the most efficient way to donate - saving time and cutting costs for the charity).