Epilepsy Unveiled! My Mission

Welcome! My name is Lola Burritt aka Lola Jines-Burritt (my pen name). I had this site designed to try and help others who are living with epilepsy. My husband Charley (now deceased due to liver failure) and I were married for twenty-six years.  We began our journey with his epilepsy in 1980. I watched his seizures progress from occasional to constant and with that progression came a gradual decline of his mental cognizance. The years progressed and somehow epilepsy took over both of our lives.  Charley eventually was diagnosed with clusters of seizures that were creating postictal psychosis. Charley’s behaviors had been erratic at different intervals throughout our marriage and I suspected his seizures were the cause but could find no answers or medical confirmation of my suspicions.  As the years progressed Charley’s irrational behavior ruled our lives as much or more than his seizures ever had.

In the eighties and nineties there was no internet to search and find answers but Charley and I  explained his behaviors to doctors.  Charley told physicians he became violent and destructive and did not remember his actions. I explained that the timing of Charley’s behaviors correlated with seizures but my descriptions and explanations were brushed off. The advice I was given was not to make Charley mad and he would not become violent and aggressive.  Believe me, I was not making him mad.

As the years passed Charley and I and his undiagnosed psychosis managed to uncomfortably live together in a cocoon whose walls were created by fear and misunderstanding.  I continued to research epilepsy and mental illness. Every book I read stated seizures do not cause mental illness. I came across this statement so many times that I eventually gave up on trying to find answers to Charley’s behaviors. If all the books written by doctors’ say seizures don’t cause mental illness I concluded I must have been barking up the wrong tree.  Charley and I rocked along with our life the best we could, he apologizing for the horrible psychotic episodes we endured and me crying thinking my heart would surely harden enough in time that the tears would stop.  Eventually they did.

In 2002 because of an episode of domestic violence that was caused by seizures creating postictal psychosis Charley came into trouble with the law and was arrested.  I began taking him to epilepsy specialists in Dallas and twenty two years of suspicions were confirmed. Charley’s behaviors were medically diagnosed as postictal psychosis.  Seizures were the culprit wreaking havoc on our life.

I felt cheated by every book I had read because the doctors who had written those books stated that epilepsy does not cause mental illness. However, those same doctors did not state that psychosis is known to be a common product of seizures but is not usually classified as a mental illness.

I decided then to write a book about our journeys.  Maybe I can spare others some of the pain and confusion we lived.  During the nine year process of writing a lot of medical papers have been posted on the internet. These papers are written by doctors who understand the medical terms written in the papers. After finding the papers I then had to research the medical terms in order to decipher their meaning and understand what doctors are saying about seizures and psychosis.

The website is a continuation of the goal of my book which is to keep passing information to others about living with epilepsy, seizures and psychosis and brain surgery.

This is the back cover blurb of the book:

Are you blindly stumbling down unfamiliar paths created by living with epilepsy? Is your world abnormal due to seizures? Are you living behind closed doors and smothered by misunderstanding? Have you decided your fate is sealed and stopped looking for answers?

My name is Lola Jines-Burritt and I will never stop seeking answers.

My husband, Charley, and I began our journey with his epilepsy in 1980. I observed every imaginable aspect of epilepsy for twenty-six years.
My goal in life is to use my knowledge to educate others and prevent them from experiencing the misery we lived due to seizures. Every answer I found concerning being a seizure caretaker and living with a person who has clusters of seizures, psychosis and brain surgery is within this book.

You will find information to help with:

– Being a competent caretaker while sheltering the one you love.
– Adjusting to epilepsy.
– Managing the public and medical community.
– Identifying clusters of seizures and understanding psychosis.
– Paralleling medical terms with recognizable psychotic behaviors.
– Comprehending delusions and identifying hallucinations.
– Preparing for all aspects of brain surgery.
– Finding hope, inspiration and guidance.

I don’t know how many people will find the help they need through my efforts.  If I can only help one person find their way through the darkness that seizures and psychosis create then all my work will have paid off.

About Lola Jines-Burritt