Struggles of turning 16 with epilespy


Sofi Q

2/1/20232 min read

Being 16 is a huge milestone for most teenagers. It's the age most commonly featured in all those cool Disney Channel movies. For most teens, it is the age that they have finally reached independence. It's when they can start going to school with car keys and shake them around so everybody in the room can know they can drive. But, for me, it's not. While I have gained more independence because of my amazing parents, they can't give me the ability to drive. Some of you guys might be thinking: What's the big deal? You have so many other options, plus not all 16-year-olds drive. While you are right, not all 16-year-olds drive, but most of them have the opportunity to.

The big deal is that I get to watch all my friends experience this huge moment and deal with the fact that I won't be able to. I get to sit through the conversations at the lunch table when they compare their terrible driver's license photos and then look at me to ask for mine for me to have to explain why I can't drive. The conversation usually ends with some "Wow I feel so terrible for you," "Like you can't drive ever?", "What are you going to do when you grow up?" and my favorite: "Girl don't worry you can be my passenger princess!". The conversation also spawns tons of questions, so many questions. And while I am Club Purple president and am supposed to be open to all these questions, I'm still a kid who gets uncomfortable talking about this subject. If I'm being honest, it's embarrassing because people start to look down on me, making me feel like I ruined the happy conversation.

I've learned that while other 16-year-olds have the milestone of driving, I have the milestone of reaching the level of maturity to understand why I can't drive. I'm not going to sit here and pretend I'm a little miss perfect and have reached that level yet. Every single day I am reminded when all my classmates take out their keys before the last bell, and every day I get angrier and angrier with myself. I'm hoping that one day I'll finally come to terms with the fact that I can't drive and will probably have super toned legs from having to bike everywhere in my future. But for now, I'll still admit that even though it sounds stupid, this is one of the biggest challenges that epilepsy has thrown at me. Never take for granted the opportunities you have :)

- Sofi <3

Me celebrating my 16th birthday :)

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