Telling my epilepsy story for Purple Day 2014

March 26th was Purple Day – the international day of epilepsy awareness – and I was privileged to be able to share my story in the Birmingham Mail that day.

I talked about the shock of being diagnosed with epilepsy at the age of 20 and some of the feelings I wrestled with at the time and later, as well as the precautions I took to minimise the risks to my unborn child when I was planning to become a mum.

Ever since it went to press I’ve been thinking of other things that I wish I’d said, so here are a few extras for you:

I got some positive comments on the Mail’s Facebook page, although a few people seemed to think that I couldn’t truly speak about epilepsy as my seizures are controlled. To which I say, yes, I know I am among the fortunate 52 per cent of people with epilepsy who live seizure-free – and I know that many people face daily struggles that I am lucky to avoid.

However, I hope that my story can be seen as a giving a positive take on living with epilepsy, and shining a light on an often misunderstood condition, but one which is surprisingly common (one in every 103 people in the UK has epilepsy).

Click here to read the full feature.

Birmingham Post and Mail cuttings – March 2014

Here are a few of the things I worked on at the Birmingham Post and Mail in March:

1/3/14 – City lecturer hoping for Oscars glory

3/3/14 – Funding to expand Tolkien’s favourite nature spot

5/3/14 – Laura Mvula and Jeff Lynne receive honorary awards from Birmingham City University

10/3/14 – Birmingham First World War memorial discovered in ruins of demolished building

11/3/14 – Pupils whose first language is not English outperforming native speakers in exams

14/3/14 – University of Birmingham relents over living wage

22/3/14 – Ex-council official: “I saw head being forced out of school by dirty tricks TEN years ago”

26/3/14 – Epilepsy hasn’t stopped me living my life – or having a healthy baby


Birmingham Post and Mail cuttings – February 2014

Here are a few of the things I worked on at the Birmingham Post and Mail in February:

6/2/14 – Aidan Burley’s mum unhappy over “tragic end” to her son’s political career

7/2/14 – Brum teen spends week in India restoring people’s sight

7/2/14 – Uni research team aims to reduce animal testing

13/2/14 – Helping school to take a turn for the better

20/2/14 – Regrets? Frank Sinatra impersonator has a few after argy-Bhaji at Indian restaurant

21/2/14 – Birmingham City University to honour Michael Heseltine and Laura Mvula

27/2/14 – Birmingham bus lanes: New warning signs to be displayed – but no fines refunded


Birmingham Post and Mail cuttings – January 2014

Here are some of the things I worked on at the Birmingham Post and Mail during January 2014:

8/1/14 – Ex-archbishop is first chancellor at new Birmingham university

10/1/14 – Good cuppa is the secret for Frances Crabtree as she marks 105th birthday

13/1/14 – £17,000 tribute to Ahsan, victim of horror car crash

13/1/14 – Ones to watch: 10 names in health and education to keep an eye on

16/1/14 – University of Birmingham staff strike after offer of 1% pay rise

16/1/14 – Anger over Midlands university chiefs’ salaries while staff are offered one per cent pay rise

18/1/14 – Hundreds of Birmingham parents are fined after kids miss school

19/1/14 – Aston student using own record label to protect endangered animals

21/1/14 – Ofsted awards school “outstanding” report

24/1/14 – Which of these James Turner Street houses takes your fancy? Prices start at £75,000

24/1/14 – Birmingham GCSE results: State school placed third in the UK

28/1/14 – Birmingham’s universities employ more than 10,000 people

30/1/14 – Birmingham head teacher slams “bloody shambles” of GCSE tables

31/1/14 – Birmingham “superhead” backs extended school days

Birmingham Mail cuttings – December 2013


Here are some of the things I worked on at the Birmingham Post and Mail during December 2013.

5/12/13 – Midlands teenagers among least likely to apply to university

6/12/13 – Students offered university slots in Birmingham based on predicted grades

10/12/13 – Fairytale ending for couple’s children’s book

12/12/13 – Birmingham schools record drop in SATs results

18/12/13 – Birmingham school celebrating fifth “outstanding” Ofsted in a row

20/12/13 – Classmates pay emotional Christmas tribute to Christina Edkins

28/12/13 – Grieving daughter: “Funeral firm lost my mum’s ashes” (FRONT PAGE)

30/12/13 – Birmingham ballet school planning major expansion

30/12/13 – Vegetarian for 28 years – and Nando’s served me up chicken