Friday, March 6, 2009

The Narc Side

Welcome to the Narc Side. No, this is not a group for narcotics agents. Nor is it a place to snitch on those you think might be doing drugs. The choice for me is drug free (with the exception of my sleep meds).

This, my friends, is a post about narcolepsy. You know, the sleep disorder.

I have narcolepsy.

Most people think this rare sleep disorder makes people randomly fall asleep in the middle of everyday activities, like this gal in the movie Deuce Bigalow: Male Gigolo.

Naturally, Hollywood exaggerates a little. I’ve never fallen asleep tossing a ball down a bowling lane. But I do fall asleep…a lot! I’ve fallen asleep in movies, conversing, writing, in the shower, even…

Oops. Sorry. I dozed off for a minute. Falling asleep at the computer is probably my most common experience.

But narcolepsy is about so much more than just falling asleep. For people living with this disorder (about 1 in every 2,000), it’s about hallucinations (most often scary), sleep paralysis, cataplexy (loss of muscle control), forgetfulness and so many other things that I can’t for the life of me remember at the moment. ;)

Tomorrow is Suddenly Sleepy Saturday. Yes, there is such a day. Hey, if we can have days dedicated to hot dogs and doughnuts, you bet we can have a day dedicated to raising narcolepsy awareness, which is the point of Suddenly Sleepy Saturday and reason for this here post.

There’s no better way to raise awareness than by getting to know someone living with this disorder, so that’s what my Narc Side posts will be about. I want to share a bit about how this affects me: the good, the bad and the funny. Don’t get me wrong; I know this disease isn’t a laughing matter. But some of the things I’ve been through are pretty funny in retrospect, and I’m all about greeting life’s challenges with laughter…or at least with a smile, since laughter can send me into cataplexy, and I’d like to avoid losing muscle control whenever possible. But, more on that in a future “Narc Side” post. For now, I just want to welcome you to The Narc Side.

Now I’m off to take a… zzzzzzzz


Kristin said...

It's always helpful to put a disorder with a face and absolutely raises awareness! Thanks for sharing your story publicy and good luck staying awake!

wendy smedley said...

thanks for sharing, any info is good- rest easy

Acinom said...

Hey! I, too, am narcoleptic and posted today about Suddenly Sleepy Saturday! I used to be embarrassed about having Narcolepsy thanks to hollywood, but I realized that it takes people like us to educate others on the reality of this disorder! Thanks for sharing!

Sherry Wright said...

Other than Hollywood I've never met anyone with the disorder. So glad you shared a bit about it. I'm sure it must be challenging at times. Have a great week Megan! :)

celester said...

wow, i somehow had ho idea, despite having worked with you and known you for years. very interesting topic, thanks for sharing, you've got a great attitude.

junkobarker said...

I love that you are doing this. I know I say this a lot, but you re truly amazing!

Damaris said...

Wow...I had never heard of this. Thank you for sharing.