Updated: Oct 29, 2019
"Hello, I’m Justin LaPier, and I’m 23 years old. I was diagnosed with epilepsy in July of 2018, but I’ve been having focal impaired awareness seizures since I was 13.
In July of 2018 I had the most significant change of my life. It seemed like any other day at work, driving to the next job site with my co-worker, the next thing I knew, I was lying down in a hospital bed in another state, a day later. I don’t remember anything out of the ordinary, but I had a seizure while pulled over from driving. I was taken to the hospital, in my home town, where I met my dad and my girlfriend. Everything still seemed completely normal to them, but I have no recollection of these events.
They wheeled me out of my room to get a CT Scan. Once we got to the CT room, I’m told I didn’t remember where, or who I was. I was then ushered into the CT machine, but before I made it I had a tonic clonic seizure and stopped breathing. The medical staff had to resuscitate me with a ventilation bag and I woke up violently. I was issued a sedative, as I was unable to be restrained. I continued on to have 7 seizures and possibly more that day. I spent 2 or 3 days in the hospital, but that wouldn’t be my last time that year. The first round of meds that I had tried worked for a couple months, but I started to have breakthrough seizures and a few emergency trips to the ER.
The doctors decided to try an at home EEG for about 3 days but every time I was hooked up, the seizures would stop so they had nothing to record. I was taken back to the hospital for a 5 day inpatient stay, where they stopped my meds completely, and transferred over to new ones. It had been such a stressful time, and has certainly taken its toll on me. These meds have been holding up so far, just some auras at night and possibly a few focal seizures, but I’m staying hopeful, as we all do. Through all of this struggle and hardship, I have managed to keep skydiving and furthering myself in the skydiving world and industry! It is my passion and I won’t let anyone take that from me, not even Epilepsy!"