Sophal and Rachanah

My name is Sophal (16), and I live with my mother and cousin, Rachanah (12). Her parents live far away with her younger siblings so that they can find work, but they can only send 10,000 riels ($2.50) each time they visit every 3 months. Her family works hard so that she can live with us and learn English. Rachanah is a great student, and I want to study with her, but I had to quit school in 4th grade because of my epileptic convulsions.

I have scars all over my body from hitting sharp objects during my convulsions. Since I was 7, my convulsions have occurred at least 40 times per month. My convulsions begin within three seconds of me realizing that they are about to happen, and I start jumping uncontrollably. Once, I was driving a truck of rice when an episode began, and I was severely injured. So yes, I would like to go to school. But I fear it would be dangerous to me and to those around me.

Disclaimer: To protect the privacy of the child, the story does not match the name and photo used in this profile.

    I help my mother pick vegetables, but my convulsions are unpredictable, so I must be very careful. With a poor certificate, I receive medicine from the hospital that reduced my convulsions to only twice this month. I hope that this will continue, but doctors are still at a loss as to how my convulsions can be stopped.