Dear Harrison Ford --
Epilepsy is not spoken about too often in Hollywood. As a matter of fact, it is a medical condition that is avoided like the plague that it is not. In some countries of the world, it is treated like a plague or a punishment at the result of a sin causing that person to be mistreated or to be left out of life's most joyous of moments. Time with family, friendships, marriage, having children and much more. Moments we may at times take for granted.
Not a lot of people know about epilepsy. That epilepsy can happen to anyone, at anytime. Regardless of age or even race.
I was faced with my first seizure at the age of 16. At the age of 22, they came back permanently. I was driving to purchase birthday presents for my husband and Christmas presents for family. Thank God I only struck a tree and my life was spared. My husband and I had only been married four months. This short documentary is the story of my journey:
I want to thank you for speaking out in support of your daughter Georgia which is very much so inspiring to all those fighting the same fight. Too, you are helping in the mission to make epilepsy more well-known to those who know nothing or very little. A spotlight is needed to be cast on this condition nationwide and worldwide.
"When you have a loved one who suffers from this disease, it can be devastating. You know how it affects their lives, their future, their opportunities and you want desperately to find mitigation. You want to find a way that they can live a comfortable and effective life."
You speak the words of millions of spouses, parents, and caregivers around the world. Becoming diagnosed with epilepsy flipped my world upside down. It was as if an earthquake had struck in both my husband and I's lives and we were left to pick up the pieces and start anew. Unsure of the future. Fearful. Heartbroken. Yet our will to not give up, to fight, to rise above remained, and so we did. We became stronger people than we ever had before.
We became inspired to advocate for the condition. Creating an Organization, The Epilepsy Network (TEN) which has a tremendous amount of support from around the world. Creating a blog speaking about my journey with epilepsy.
Fighting back tears, Ford said, "Dr. Orinn Devinsky, who is a dear friend, made the diagnosis: epilepsy. He prescribed the right medication and therapy; she has not had a seizure in eight years."
With the right therapy, alongside hope, faith and support, I know seizure-freedom can be achieved and I am so thrilled that Georgia has not had a seizure in eight years! It is my hope that she remain that way.
It is also my hope that in Hollywood, epilepsy is embraced, talked about, and supported just as much as other medical conditions are. It is not a medical condition to be feared or ignored. Not a condition to be brushed under the rug. Not a condition to be kept quiet about.
Again, thank you for shining a light on epilepsy. Having loving, caring support is astounding medicine in itself. Not only motivational and inspirational for your daughter Georgia but all who are fighting epilepsy too.
Take care and God bless,