I remember when I started taking dilantin in high school, I called them my “stupid pills” because they made it harder to concentrate and focus. It hurt my schoolwork and it hurt my grades. It also prevented my having more seizures, so it was a mixed blessing.
Flash forward to 2000 when I was having blackouts and starting to bounce from medication to medication, searching for something that would solve the problem instead of limiting my seizures to every two months or so. One drug stopped them, a variety didn’t… I’m pretty sure one did some permanent damage to my long-term memory… and some people have surgery and go through other treatments to prevent seizures from occurring, essentially searching for a “cure” for epilepsy.
How does that affect the rest of the brain? My recent EEG showed excess activity in one area, yet the treatment inevitably impacts everything. And there’s no baseline for comparison: where would I be without epilepsy? Without all of the medications? I have no idea and it doesn’t really matter. We’re in the place and time that we’re in with our current circumstances. We have epilepsy and we make do. We survive and we thrive. We are. And that is enough.