Sunday, April 29, 2012

Well, that was quick: My Return from Afghanistan

So this post will be a slightly personal post... Just because I know I have a lot of people wandering what the hell happened to me, and I'd rather just post a blog so everyone knows rather than people trying to figure it out on their own.

All right, so what did happen to me?  Well, I had a seizure while I was in Afghanistan.  So I got med-evaced out of Afghanistan, and am currently in Germany.  Someone apparently walked in on me while I was in the midst of the seizure, and I guess I hit my head on the U.S. flag near my desk, because now I have a nice gash on the top of my forehead, and there was a bit of blood around me (or so I hear).

  For those of you who don't know, this is not my first seizure... I actually had a seizure back in 2010... well, actually, I had two, but they were both within a couple of hours of each other.  The difference between now and then is that my last one was the first one, and because my tests all came back normal, the docs attributed it to pills I was taking.  Well, this time I wasn't taking any pills, and I wasn't really sleep deprived.  Plus, I'd had an "aura" prior to this one... Auras are a weird feeling that a lot of people get prior to having seizures, and are actually mini-seizures in themselves, but they generally do not manifest themselves.  I've had several auras in the past couple of years (especially in the past year), but they have never turned into anything, so I've been able to ignore them.  Well, this time the aura was particularly intense, and someone whose soldier actually has seizures walked into the office while I was having it.  I did not, however, think it would turn into anything because I'd had several auras that turned into nothing.... Well, I guess I was wrong, because here I am...

Saw a neurologist, and I had another EEG (they hook a machine up to your brain and graph your brain waves to look for anything unusual), and this time it actually showed up as abnormal (last time everything was normal).  So, because this was not my first seizure, and because I'd had several auras, and because of the abnormal brain waves on the EEG, I was diagnosed with epilepsy.  With that diagnosis comes medicine... The same crap they put me on the LAST time I had a seizure (but they let me go off of it because I hadn't had any issues)... Some of the side effects include moodiness, fatigue, dizziness, and other fun side effects.  So, I don't know if I'm slightly jet lagged or it's the meds, but I am EXTREMELY out of it today.  I pretty much feel like I'm walking around in a haze... And frankly, I feel stoned.  Fortunately I'm not feeling particularly moody - probably because I'm too out of it to care.   

Anyways, so now begins treatment for epilepsy... I'm all ready dreading the meds... Particularly in my current drugged state of mind.   Fortunately, I am wiser now... UNfortunately, this means I do not get to return to Afghanistan :(  I was there all of a month... and now I'm done.  I am dreading going back to work back in the states, while also not being able to drive for the next three months... It is extremely difficult to get around while being unmarried and living alone somewhere that does not believe in public transportation.  Not to mention the fact that I won't have a real position because I was SUPPOSED to be in Afghanistan... But, I'm going to try to remain positive, because everything happens for a reason, correct?  I mean... This DID happen in Afghanistan, and it could have happened anywhere, at anytime... heck, it could have happened while I was in my room, and nobody would have seen it.  These are the things I'm trying to keep in mind...

Alas, I should sleep now.  Speaking of weird deja vu feelings... I'm feelin' em now!  (I think it has to do more with being in Germany again, though!) 


P.S.  To the people who send support and whatnot to the soldiers - thank you!  I am with the warrior transition soldiers, and the support is amazing here, even if I was not hurt in combat.  The free blankets, clothes, food, etc. are such morale boosters.  Though I know things could be so much worse (I could actually be hurt), it is really hard being away from my unit and the soldiers I work with, and the support is helping a lot.