Sunday, March 25, 2012

Why I’m Wearing Purple on March 26

Breakfast of Champions!
March 26 is the Global Day of Epilepsy Awareness (otherwise known as “Purple Day” thanks to the Purple Day Organization ). 

Purple Day is about spreading awareness and education about epilepsy which, hopefully, leads to more research so this disorder can be cured. 

Yes, cured.  The goal is to stop epilepsy in its tracks.

On Monday, I won’t just be wearing purple but I will be sharing purple cupcakes (because what better way to get people’s attention than with chocolate?). 

Hey, you had me at “cupcakes!”

The Purple Day Organization further explains what Purple Day is about: “Purple Day was founded in 2008, by nine-year-old Cassidy . . . Cassidy's goal is for people with epilepsy everywhere to know they are not alone.”

To me, Purple Day is about my brother Robert.  Robert has waited very patiently his whole life to find a cure.  He’s had two brain surgeries, he’s tried most medications on the market and he has participated in a study for the Deep Brain Stimulator. 

He’s waited for a cure since he was five years old. 

The seizures continue but so does Robert.

Robert is willing to try anything to stop his seizures.

He prays every night that God will take his seizures away “completely.” 

He’s never lost his hope or his faith.

I want to do what I can so Robert (and the millions like him) can finally see a cure for epilepsy.  I will do what I can to make people aware of epilepsy and to educate people about epilepsy.

That’s why I’m wearing purple (and eating  . . . I mean, baking . . . so many cupcakes). 

A few facts about epilepsy (for more, please read the epilepsy awareness month series). 

1.  Robert is one of almost 3 million people living in the United States and 50 million worldwide with epilepsy.

2.  Epilepsy is the 3rd most common neurological disorder behind Alzheimer’s Disease and Stroke.

3.  Epilepsy affects more people than multiple sclerosis, cerebral palsy, muscular dystrophy, and Parkinson’s disease combined.  (Yes, COMBINED!)

4.  It is a MYTH that a person can swallow their tongue during a seizure.    Also, nothing should be placed in a person’s mouth during a seizure.  The best way to help a person having a seizure (if they are lying down) is to help keep them safe.  If possible, roll them over to their side and place something soft under their head. 

5.  According to the CDC, “epilepsy results in an estimated annual cost of $15.5 billion in medical costs and lost or reduced earnings and production.” 

Please join me in wearing purple, grab a purple cupcake and help me spread awareness about epilepsy.  Thank you!
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