Past tense

11 Feb

Jade and I just got back from a whirlwind visit to Vancouver: down on Wednesday, home on Friday. (This whole month is a whirlwind, to tell you the truth, but I won’t tell you all about it right now. I just want to share with you the best moment of the trip.)

Jade’s regular neurologist is off on maternity leave, so we met Dr. Farrell for the first time. He’s a wonderful doctor, and I believe he founded the keto program at BC Children’s Hospital, so we knew we were in good hands. Jade had done her EEG in the morning, and Dr. Farrell came in to discuss next steps with us, including how quickly or slowly to wean her off the diet. Her EEG looked great and Dr. Farrell reiterated one characteristic we know about Myoclonic Astatic Epilepsy: that, if quickly brought under control, it is generally considered a childhood epilepsy.

But this is how he started off the comment: “The type of epilepsy she had….”

Let me say that again:

“The type of epilepsy she HAD…”

That is the first time any medical professional has talked about Jade’s epilepsy in the past tense. It didn’t really matter what he said after that. The fact that he had just called her epilepsy a thing of the past vibrated in my brain like a thing alive, and is still making me quiver with amazement.

It might still take a year — or even two — to wean Jade of the ketogenic diet, and I won’t feel like this is all really over until she is. But I feel like we’ve crossed an amazing threshold.

Epilepsy, past tense.


20 Responses to “Past tense”

  1. Nemmy February 11, 2012 at 10:04 pm #

    I think this would be an appropriate moment for that Kermit the Frog video Michael posted before to make another appearance… 😀

  2. Megan February 11, 2012 at 10:30 pm #


  3. kara February 11, 2012 at 10:38 pm #


    How absolutely amazing!

  4. Opa February 12, 2012 at 2:15 am #

    So beautiful, Fawny. Sniffle!

  5. allmycke February 12, 2012 at 5:12 am #

    What wonderful news!

  6. tracynicholrose February 12, 2012 at 6:21 am #

    That is so wonderful!

  7. Marian February 12, 2012 at 6:48 am #

    Wow! Sooooo good to hear. You’ve done an amazing job to get Jade to this point. Congratulations!!!!! I think I’ll be smiling all day 🙂 *HUGS*

  8. Catherine Forest February 12, 2012 at 7:39 am #

    Ohhh!! I am vibrating with you from Costa Rica!!! I have goosebumps all over!!

  9. Karyn February 12, 2012 at 8:24 am #

    Absolutely amazing news!

  10. MFA Mama February 12, 2012 at 11:06 am #


  11. Tami Stillshrinking Tushie Kelland February 13, 2012 at 7:35 am #

    that is so awesome! I am so happy to hear that!

  12. jen February 13, 2012 at 5:51 pm #

    WOW, I had shivers reading that! There are true rainbows in this world!

  13. Marianne Fritzen February 14, 2012 at 2:07 pm #

    Liebe Fawny, eine wunderbare Nachricht am späten Abend. Ich kann nachfühlen wie viel Du in diesen letzten Jahren gebangt und gehofft hast. Aber tröste Dich nicht zu früh: Kinder bleiben Kinder so lange man lebt, und so lange freut man sich oder leidet mit ihnen. Das hat Mike auch schon erfahren müssen als ihre zwei heranwuchsen. Die kids gehen abends in die disco, amüsieren sich, und Mami liegt im Bett und spitzt die Ohren. “Gott sei Dank, sie sind wieder heil zu Hause angekommen. Jetzt kann ich schlafen.” Lass Dich herzlich umarmen.

  14. Marianne February 14, 2012 at 3:23 pm #


  15. maleesha February 16, 2012 at 5:22 am #

    Awesome! So very awesome!

  16. Cristina (Bertrand's Mom) February 21, 2012 at 8:08 pm #

    I didn’t remember if I commented on FB, but this is so fricken’ awesome that it is worth repeating:
    And, congrats, Mama. 😉

    • nitadances February 23, 2012 at 9:37 am #

      Fawn, just reading this today with tears in my eyes. Fabulous news!

  17. MommyTime February 24, 2012 at 6:39 pm #

    WoW! YAY!! Hooray! I know I’m a little behind in getting to this, but I’m still so happy for you that I had to come over and send you a virtual hug. This is tremendous and wonderful news. Congratulations. I hope you are all getting to bask in it for a while.

  18. Libris March 3, 2012 at 10:20 am #


    Congratulations for the “past tense”. It must have been a great moment!

    I have been following your blog for about a year now and I think you are SO brave. I also admire the nature you living area is surrounded – seems to be very “exotic” as seen from almost another side of the world: from Finland.

    I asked you aboit the type of ketogenic diet last summer; I hope you will some time have time to write about it or at least pass some links concerning it and its impacts on deseases.

    Have a nice spring time!

    Greetings from Finland!

  19. bellamichellesc April 6, 2012 at 2:57 pm #

    WOW…I can’t wait until we can use it in the past tense (I really hope and pray that we do one day!!!) My son is on the Modified Atkins version of the diet and as of today we are 12 weeks seizure free. I have really enjoyed reading your blog!

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