Category Archives: Inspirational People

Guest Blog! Bryce from Positive Epilepsy

Hey friends! I am super excited to share with you the story of Bryce, of who has agreed to share his story on Life at Full Volume! How cool is that?!  Bryce is a very positive stay at home dad and works hard to take care of his two children. He also aspires to someday work out of his home. He is all the way in New Zealand which just shows me how big the Epilepsy community truly is. Everyone with Epilepsy that I have come across are seemingly positive, and want to make a difference in some way.

This is Bryce’s story:


BryceMy name is Bryce . Due to my Complex Partial Epilepsy, I am a Stay At Home Dad to my 2 Children.I am also happily married.

I am very involved with the NZ Epilepsy Foundation which is really exciting. Our goal is to get people with Epilepsy in New Zealand together as a group .     (NZ Epilepsy Foundation)

There is no need to be shy. So, life is what you make it. I am always excited and try to stay positive. Epilepsy has added to my motivation. My Epilepsy started at puberty, which at this stage is about 20 years old. I do get frustrated with my Epilepsy, but I always remember that things could be a lot worse. I always think that I have 2 legs and 2 arms. I know people with physical disabilities live fulfilling lives, but I feel that it would be horrible without them !!

I have about 2-3 seizures a month. Over the last 15 months, I have had 3 occasions where I have gone 30 days seizure free, so that’s something to be excited about. Lets hope its leading to more improvements in the future. My seizures are often brought on by Stress or Emotions. I studied Landscape Design, but due to Epilepsy I have never been able to hold a drivers license which cuts back some employment possibilities.

So, I walk everywhere. One thing about it is it keeps you reasonably fit and healthy. When you look for employment, most employers want someone who can drive, and many are frightened of the word Epilepsy. That’s pretty sad. The general public have a real lack of understanding. I may look to do more tertiary studies at some stage.

If I did it may be in the area of I.T / Website Design. I would also like to work with Epilepsy.

My goal is to earn an income from home. I do love been at home with my children, but I don’t understand how some people don’t see having children as part of their future. But in saying that, there are times of boredom. This is due to not been able to do a lot, go anywhere. If only
I could drive. I sometimes wonder how others would feel if they had no license
for a month or so.

But, nevermind. As I said. Let’s have Epilepsy add to our motivation. The future is very exciting. Bring it one.

OUR ASPIRATIONS ARE OUR POSSIBILITIES !!I truly thank Bryce for his positivity, and since I am a  young twenty something year old he is an example of how people can live with Epilepsy and still live a fulfilling life. Thank you Bryce for your motivation and positive attitude!! Feel free to check out his blog a Check out Bryce’s blog, and maybe you can relate to his experiences? Also, stay tuned: I will be a guest blogger on his site soon!

Keep fighting the good fight! xox
Love you all! xox

You Inspire Me: Friends Who Have Made a Difference

I feel like I haven’t spoken much about inspiring people in my life in awhile, so I figured I would write a little post about it. I have written about this friend before, but she has made such a positive impact in my life that I thought she deserved another post. Also, all of my friends are special, and I am going to write more posts about people who have helped me. So, to those who know me, don’t think you’re not special to me!


My friend Allie* instills the confidence in me to be who I really am. I don’t think she really knows this, but I look up to her because she is so true to herself. I feel that I could shave my head and she would say that I look hot. She has always been there for me, even though we have busy schedules and can’t always hang out, she can always take a phone call or listen to whatever crisis that I happen to be going through. Now that I am back home visiting my family for the summer, I miss her more than ever. I feel so special to be considered one of her closest friends. I say this because she has so many friends and so many people want to hang out with her and be with her. I feel like I did nothing special but just lived my life, and yet she considers me to be special and an inspiration in return. ALL of my friends are special to me and have varying qualities that I appreciate, yet I just thought I would write a few words about Allie again. She has cheered me on through my final year in university, and cheered the loudest when I crossed the stage at my convocation (graduation for university). It felt so amazing to have so many people cheering for me, especially since they knew I went through the semester from hell as my mom likes to call it. Once again, thanks Allie. I miss ya tons and I’ll see you soon.

Love you all! xox

dr seuss

*Name has been changed to protect identity

Inspiring People Who Have Made an Impact: Allie’s Story

Friends. They make our lives complete. There is something about a good friend that makes you feel more appreciated, and like you have a place and purpose in the world. You never really know when you’re going to make a friend out of someone. I mean, sure you can meet someone and have a good feeling about it, but it’s hard to say right off the bat.

This describes one of my best friends Allie. We met in second year of university, but our interactions were always through schoolwork and completing an assignment for one of our classes. She was nice, but I never really got the chance to know her. We were simply peers, nothing else.

Soo true

All right, fast forward about two years to the year 2011. I was just going through the usual humdrums of life: going to school, completing assignments, doing readings, and working out. My friend Allie made a facebook post asking if anyone was interested in going to see Fefe Dobson with her at one of the local colleges. I figured why not. It would be fun to go to the show and maybe I could get to know her better by doing something fun outside of school. We had a great time at the concert and I got to see a side of her that I had never seen before. I remember how she cried when she tried to get one of the security guards to give Fefe a little message. She explained to me and her other friend that Fefe’s songs are what helped her get through high school. I was a little surprised about how emotional she was about the whole situation, but I figured that there was probably a lot more about her that I didn’t know.

Over the next couple of months I went through a couple of changes. I had a break up, got my heart stomped on, and had too much time alone to wonder about the complexities of the world. My summer job wasn’t starting until July, and I hadn’t yet figured out what I was going to do with myself until then. One evening I randomly received a text from Allie, telling me I should come out with her and her friends to karaoke. At first I was hesitant, because I had gotten to the point where I spent so much time alone that it was almost more work to go out and socialize. But then I decided to go out with her and her friends. Why not! It’s not like I had anything more exciting going on. As I ventured out in to the world of karaoke, one thing became quite apparent to me: my friend Allie had a booming voice and a ton of self-confidence to back it up. The way she interacted with everyone (including strangers at the bar) amazed me. She just seemed to talk to people with ease and confidence, and was able to strike up a conversation about anything without seeming weird or awkward.

I think Allie will appreciate this picture 😉

Overtime we became closer, and even though neither of us can really remember exactly what brought us closer together, I learned so much about who she is and what her story was. I aspire to be like her, as she has such a strong sense of who she is as a person, and she is not afraid to express it. She is one of the most loyal people that I have ever encountered, and will do anything for her friends. There is something about her that brings out the free-spirit in me, and I know I can tell her anything and she won’t judge me, regardless of how silly or shallow it may sound. She is the type of person who will drop everything if you need her, and on more than one occasion she was there for me when I needed help. Off the top of my mind I can think of the time where she just listened as I whined, complained and cried about issues I was having with someone, to another time where she rushed over as quickly as she could to my apartment because I had just had a seizure and no one else was around to help me out.

Now, not to make this a sob story, but I have struggled with making and keeping friends all through my elementary to high school years. When I was grade twelve I began to wonder if there was something wrong with me, because so many of my ‘close’ friends ended up bullying me or betraying me in someway or another. I found it hard to trust that people were my friends because they liked me for who I was, instead of for some alterior motive. Allie has re instilled the confidence in me to believe that there are people out there who want to be my friend because they like me for who I am. Never once has she made me feel like I owe her for anything or that she resents what she has done to help me. I think we both appreciate that we both need each other, and it never feels like a stretch to ask her how her day is going and call her up and talk about things and get updated with her life. Even though Allie has been going through some tough times, she is always there for me and always tries to maintain a positive attitude about her life. On the flip side though, she is real about the situations and never tries to sugar coat things. This honesty and openness is something that I appreciate, and it really helps me to build a strong friendship with her.

I feel like this blog post had been a jumble of thoughts, but basically what I am trying to say is that Allie is such an inspiring person because she isn’t afraid to be herself. When I tell her about parts of myself that I am not always open to discussing with others, she listens carefully and gently encourages me to take a better look at them too. She has shown me that it is okay to follow your own path, regardless of what it may be. I respect the hell out of that, because it takes guts to do what you really want, instead of just going along with what everyone wants you to do.

So even though I never knew that Allie and I would become good friends, I see how rich our friendship is, and how much richer my life is because of it. To me, that is invaluable.

Here’s a little quote that I know Allie will appreciate. Love ya girl!


Inspiring People Who Have Made an Impact: Rachel’s Story

There is something that has been lingering in my mind the past few days. I’m not sure why, but I keep coming back to one of my best friends, and how much of an inspiration she is to me.

This blog post is part of a new series entitled Inspiring People Who Have Made an Impact. Through these blog posts I will talk about various people who have made an impact in my life and how they truly inspire me to be a better person. I hope they inspire you too!

My friend Rachel (as described in Turning up the Volume on Body Image and Self-Esteem) is one of the most amazing people that I have ever met. We have been friends for about 5 years now, and it was amazing that we even became friends at all because she was in “advanced academics” while I was in the ‘regular curriculum’. None of our classes were together, and from an outside perspective you might not think that we would have any common interests or personality traits that would help keep a friendship going.

Maybe it has something to do with how well our personalities combine, or how talented, intelligent and humble she is. But without a doubt, she has always stayed by me, regardless of the situation.
My final year in high school could be described as a Fantastically Depressing Success. I was going through a lot of personal stuff, and while some friends suggested that I was needy and that I needed to see the school counsellor, my friend Rachel just stayed out of the drama and continued to be my friend. I felt alone, and like everyone had their place but me. Everyone else had their group of friends that they hung out with at lunch, while I just kinda flitted back and forth from group to group, doing my thing. Despite all of that, I graduated from high school with graduated honours with distinction, and received the Writing 12 Award along with the Spanish 12 award. It amazes me how I was able to excel, despite the fact that my mental and emotional states were in the toilet.

Anyways, back to Rachel: even though Rachel and I are unable to get together on a regular basis, we still hold the closeness of a tightly knit friendship. You know those friends that you only see a couple times a year but it’s like there was no time apart? It’s like that. She is so open, and I know I can tell her anything. She also has interesting things to say, such as how her work is going, how a new craft project is progressing, and how things are going with the guy that she is seeing.

One thing that I always admired about Rachel is how willing she is to try new things and have new experiences. As she has been living in Toronto for four months this summer, she has had to completely open up to new experiences and meet new people. As mentioned above, this is not a problem for her. Even though through our Skype conversations I could tell that she didn’t feel entirely grounded in her new job, she was making the best of it by going out to Swing Dancing Clubs and reaching out to the other people around her. She is an amazing person because what you see is what you get. I never feel like she is hiding anything from me, and I know that she feels free to be herself when we are together. Also, if you become her friend, she will be loyal to you and be there for you as much as possible. I think people can sense this about her, because she attracts amazing people into her life, and (from where I stand) it seems that people don’t just drop her as a friend. When telling a friend about her before I introduce them, I can’t help but say that she is one of the most amazing person that I have ever met, and it will take meeting her to understand.

I have been steadily placed in the same location for the last four to five years due to schooling, but when that next big change comes up, I am going to rip a page out of Rachel’s book and treat it with excitement and awe. I am going to see what the new situation has to offer, (whether it be a new job, or living in a new city) and soak up all the excitement with a fresh pair of eyes just like my friend Rachel has done so well. Even though I don’t get to see her that often, I still feel that pang of excitement when we get together after a long period of being apart. She knows not only me, but my heart, which is truly priceless when it comes to friendship.

Who inspires you in your life! I would love to hear in the comment section and stay tuned for our next inspiring person!! xox