Channing had always been a quiet girl who kept mostly to herself. She did her talking on the slopes skiing freestyle or in the arena jumping horses. All that changed when, at 10, Channing was diagnosed with epilepsy. Her life hasn’t been the same since.
Initially, each day brought one setback after another, as Channing’s seizures proved difficult to control. The extreme headaches and fatigue that followed frequent seizures kept her all but incapacitated. Eventually, after missing most of middle school, doctors were able to partly control Channing’s seizures. She’d endured, and now there was no stopping her.
Outfitted with a harness to secure her to the chairlift, in case she had a seizure while skiing, Channing became a coach for the Aspen Valley Ski Club. And outfitted with a titanium helmet and an inflatable air vest, in case she had a seizure while jumping horses, Channing also became a competitive horse jumper.
Now that she's overcome a lot of epilepsy's challenges, Channing's main goal is to help others with epilepsy do the same. She's relocated to Cincinnati, and co-leads the Epilepsy Youth Council of Cincinnati.
Whether it was her struggles with epilepsy that helped Channing develop the drive to achieve what she has, or whether she would have had that drive anyway, we'll never know. One thing’s for certain though. Epilepsy has made Channing more empathetic to the struggles of others, and she’s no longer content to remain quiet.
With the assistance of her service dog, Georgie, Channing is taking her story to teens, and teens are responding. Channing has been featured on NBC’s Evening News with Brian Williams, in Brazil’s Veja Magazine, Aspen Magazine,Teen Voices and Girls Life.com.
As Lena Nicholson, one of Channing’s closest friends, says, “The strength Channing possesses to work through medical challenges everyday with a spunky, comedic attitude is enough to inspire anyone who learns her story.”