A true story about the impact of PR

Normally our blog focuses on hints and tips and advice on PR but last week a talk our MD gave in which she mentioned how a magazine feature led to a serious change in her life made us think that perhaps we should tell her story which demonstrates the power of PR.

As long as I can remember I’ve had these ‘blips’. It’s hard to explain but it’s like a very intense form of déjà vu. These episodes would often happen in my sleep and sometimes when I was awake but it was something that I just lived with. To some extent I thought it was normal and it didn’t occur to me to worry about them. When I was going through a particularly floaty phase at 17 I did convince myself that I might be psychic…Yes, I know, I was young and buying crystals and pictures of Unicorns so it kind of fitted in! It was the 90’s after all…

Time went on and nothing really changed, I was still experiencing these blips but just accepted it as part of my life.

Then one day, I was reading a magazine article in Marie-Claire about a girl the same age as me, who started having ‘absences’. Her description of how it felt really struck a chord with me and it turned out that what she had was a form of epilepsy.

When I was a baby, I contracted salmonella poisoning. One night, my parents heard me screaming – but not normal baby screaming – and when the doctor arrived he rushed me straight to hospital where my temperature was so high I was having fits and the doctors had to pack me in ice to bring my temperature down.

While I’d always known about this, I’d never put two and two together to realise that this might have been what caused my blips.

I went to see a neurologist and was duly diagnosed with petit mal epilepsy.

While I’d already realised that it was probably epilepsy, it was still a shock, especially when it dawned on me that I’d lose my driving license for a year.

Five years on I’m fine, on medication which keeps it under control and I’m driving again – in total I lost it for three years and I had to spend a lot of time explaining I hadn’t broken the law to explain why I wasn’t driving!

While it wasn’t an easy time and I had to rely on help from family and friends to get around (thank you everyone!), I got away very lightly. Just seeing what people with severe epilepsy have to deal with really put it in perspective and things could have been a lot worse, but the turning point was the magazine article.

The point of me sharing this story which I normally don’t, is to show how PR really can have an impact. Whether it’s about a product which can help people deal with a problem they face or a story to help raise awareness of a charity or of a certain condition, it can really have an impact and affect the lives of others in a positive way.