She Looks “Normal”

I was at soccer coaching my girls (11-12 years old) and a girl on the other team, L, suddenly had an absent seizure. An absent seizure is where they looked dazed and confused and then they snap back into it as if nothing happened.

It is amazing to me that the parents are giving L a normal childhood and not keeping her in a bubble.

As we sat on the bench, one of my players said, “It’s weird… she looks normal!” I turned to my player and replied,

She is normal. She’s just like you and me. What else would she look like? It’s called an invisible illness. Do you know people with diabetes? Can you tell that they have an illness?

I did my best to sound educational and not personally offended because I am normal. This little 11-12 year old and I are one and the same. We both have seizures and we both love soccer. The only difference is our actual diagnosis. We have different types of epilepsy.

At the end of the game, I walked over to her and told her we were the same. I talked to her mom for maybe a good 30 minutes. I think her mom was more excited to meet someone else with epilepsy than she was.

To L’s parents, keep treating her like a kid and not a kid with epilepsy. To L’s sister, stop being so mean. You act like a douchebag on the field… all you do is yell at your sister for every mistake she makes.

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