Good morning and Happy October! We are in the month before epilepsy awareness month already. What are your plans to share awareness?
This month I wanted to share a different type of story with you. This story is going to help bring about more awareness to SUDEP (Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy). We in the epilepsy community know how very important that this be given more awareness. Too many young lives are lost to epilepsy and this must stop and the only way is to bring more awareness!! I met Chelsea’s amazing mom online via Facebook and I just adore her! She is doing amazing things in Chelsea’s name and offering a great amount of support to others effected with SUDEP. Even though Chelsea is no longer with us she is still a FIGHTER and her parents are carrying on her fight! Please take a moment after reading her story to visit her site: http://chelseahutchisonfoundation.org/. It is my honor to introduce you to this beautiful young lady and her amazing parents!
Chelsea was born September 28, 1992 and brought more joy into our lives than we can express in words. At the age of 11, she began having occasional seizures, until one night, April 19, 2009, at the age of 16, Chelsea died very unexpectedly after having a seizure in her sleep. No one had ever told us a seizure could take her life. The term, SUDEP (Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy) is a term we would learn to know well.
Chelsea loved life! She lived every day to the fullest and never ceased to amaze us with her creativity and imagination. From believing she was a baby fox or a mama kitty as a young girl, to pretending to be a mermaid lying helplessly on the floor inside her bedroom (you know, Mermaids can’t walk); there was never a dull moment. She had a pink alien friend named “Sweetie” who went on many wonderful adventures with her. To most, Sweetie looked like a simple pink baby blanket. “Britany” was her special teddy bear friend who had her own passport and traveled everywhere with her. The stories she would write and the pictures she would draw amazed us. She loved to read and would get on and off the school bus with her nose in a book; she just couldn’t get enough. As she grew into the beautiful young woman that she was, her love and appreciation for life and those around her grew even stronger. Her love for shopping and design labels grew too. Chelsea’s room was immaculate and her school notebooks were color-coordinated and uniquely decorated; complete with a Disney Princess folder inside each one. She took on most school assignments with great enthusiasm. There was no such thing as a simple book report. Instead, they were projects that typically involved a trip to a store for special art supplies to make them just so.
Chelsea was as incredibly beautiful on the inside as she was on the outside. She never wanted to be limited to just one group of friends; she genuinely wanted to be friends with EVERYONE! She loved who she was and even loved her name! It was important for her to be her own person and often referred to herself as a “dork” with pride! Chelsea touched many lives and we are amazed at how many she continues to touch even after her passing.
Chelsea was a beautiful young girl who was taken way to soon by the evil that we call epilepsy. How do we stop this from happening? We talk about it to everyone we know!! We let people know what epilepsy is, we educate others on SUDEP so that another precious child is not lost to this! Will you join the Fight to “E-Race” Epilepsy?