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Celebrities with Epilepsy

As I have mentioned in previous posts,  a few years ago I was feeling a little isolated  with regards to my epilepsy.

In a bid to see how achievable a full and exciting life can be, I decided to Google celebrities who had been dealt the same hand as myself. I was a little reluctant to do so, afraid of what I may find.  Many people with epilepsy have a certain stigma attached to them, in that they may not be as intelligent as others – which we all know is a myth, or worse, that epilepsy has connections with madness, an even older myth.

I have overheard conversations of people discussing how they believe epilepsy is connected with insanity. It really hurts to listen to it, knowing that they couldn’t be more wrong. This was one of the reasons that I was a little afraid to research this topic. I was expecting a tiny list, where celebrities of the past were too afraid to be open about their diagnosis.

You can only imagine my amazement when I discovered the full list of famous people with epilepsy throughout history. It’s a list that includes names of leaders, inventors, writers, artists and musicians. Many of whom I had admired all my life.

I have compiled a list of their names and here it is, dating from 500BC to the present day:

  • Pythagoras (570BC – 495BC)
  • Socrates (470BC – 399BC)
  • Aristotle (384BC – 322BC)
  • Alexander the Great (356BC – 323BC)
  • Julius Caesar (100BC – 44BC)
  • Alfred the Great (849 – 899)
  • Michelangelo (1475 – 1519)
  • Leonardo Da Vinci (1452 – 1519)
  • Martin Luther (1483-1546)
  • Charles V of Spain (1500 – 1558)
  • Louis XIII of France (1601 – 1643)
  • Sir Isaac  Newton  (1643-1727)
  • George Frederick Handel (1685 – 1759)
  • Peter the Great (1672 – 1725)
  • James Madison (1751 – 1836) 4th U.S. President in 1816 potentially he had epilepsy suffering from attacks which were similar, Madison wrote that he had “a constitutional tendency to sudden attacks somewhat resembling epilepsy which suspended all intellectual function…. They continued throughout my life with prolonged intensity”
  • Paul I Russia (1754 – 1801)
  • Sir Walter Scott (1771 – 1832)
  • Nicolo Paganini (1782 – 1840)
  • Lord Byron (1788 – 1824)
  • Hector Berlioz (1803 – 1869)
  • Edgar Allan Poe (1809 – 1849)
  • Robert Schuman (1810 – 1856)
  • Charles Dickens (1812 – 1870)
  • Fyoder Mikhaylovich Dostoyevsky (1821 – 1881)
  • Lewis Carroll (1832 – 1898)
  • Alfred Nobel (1833 – 1896)
  • Peter Tchaikovsky (1840 – 1893)
  • Vincent Van Gogh (1853-1890)
  • Theodore Roosevelt (1858 – 1919)
  • Agatha Christie (1890 – 1976)
  • Bud Abbott (1895 – 1974)
  • George Gershwin (1898 – 1937)
  • Truman Capote (1924 – 1984)
  • Richard Burton (1925 – 1984)
  • Neil Young (1945-)
  • Danny Glover (1947-) Actor
  • Margaux Hemmingway (1955-1996)
  • Prince (1958-2016)
  • Hugo Weaving (1960-)
  • Susan Boyle (1961-)
  • Lil Wayne (1982-)
  • Dai Greene (1986-)

Next time when you hear someone say something a little in insensitive or you have a day where you feel that nothing is possible, just remember this list of people who achieved amazing things despite their medical issues and ignored what others must have said to them.

Some used their experiences to their advantages and incorporated it into their writing giving us famous and  now beloved works.

I do not doubt that throughout history having epilepsy must have been hugely concerning especially without the medical knowledge and medication that we have today.

This only in-grains my belief that if they could tackle life and still achieve their dreams, so can we.

Thanks for reading,

Becky 🙂

 

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My First Childhood Hero

I have planned to periodically write about people who have inspired me.

There are many role models in my life, which include both world-renowned legends and treasured family members. I love discovering new people who inspire me and I look forward to sharing the varying characters with you.

By the way, my list of role models expands continually. I think you can never have too many people to look up to.

The person I am going to write about today was the first person I can truly remember looking up to as a child and aspiring to be like in the future.

I am sure many of you have already guessed who I am about to write about as this day is particularly poignant for them (31/08/2017).

This person is Princess Diana.

princess-diana-charity-lg

Even though I was only a small child when she passed away, I has always saw her face on the news and in the papers. Although my parents sheltered me from the difficulties that she was dealing with in the early nineties. From my point of view – as a child, I always saw Diana as the princess; of course she would always be in the paper.

After Diana sadly passed away, I soon discovered that there was a little bit more to Diana than I originally knew. I naturally became curious to learn more about her, so my Mum bought me a little Ladybird book about her.I adored that book.

 

I couldn’t believe how many lives she had altered. I learnt about her selfless nature to help others, the fact that she was a devoted mother…and had the best dresses in the world! For me as a little girl she seemed like the perfect hero, who oozed unconditional love. I could not find anything I didn’t like about her.

808268-diana-and-harry

Looking back, I think it’s an unusual thing, to be a young child and be inspired by such a strong influential woman, who was committed to helping others and make a good impression on the world. This is something that has stayed with me through to adulthood; Princess Diana is still a powerful influence on my life, as I believe she is for millions of other people.

Twenty years on, people still remember and miss her.

There are very few people in this world that are huge positive influencers, making great changes to the world, breaking down stigmas, and that help and support anyone who needs it.

I am glad that I had Princess Diana was my first role model, I believe she is the best person a child could look up to.

 

 

Thanks for reading,

Becky 🙂