Sooooo Sleepy

My intentions were to update this blog more often than I already have but (surprise!) I’ve felt too tired to do so.

I’ll go ahead and type a short version of last week for me.

On Monday, I started taking Adderrall during the day (to keep me awake and focused) and Ambian at night (to help me stay asleep). I felt that neither one of them was working very well. I still felt tired during the day and like I didn’t sleep much when I woke up the next morning. Looking back, I realize that the Adderrall helped me far more than I thought. I suppose I forgot how tired I typically am during the school day, but I’m getting ahead of myself! 

The reason I realize it helped me more than I thought is because on Thursday, I was informed by my mom that it interacted with the medication I was already taking and then I later learned that it interfered with my Long QT Syndrome (If you don’t know what this is, click here). This may have been potentially deadly for me, so needless to say, I am less than happy with the doctor who prescribed the Adderrall to me.

The last day I took the Addrrall was last Thursday, and I have come to see that I need it. Or at least I need something like it. All I want to do is sleep. I wake up tired and stay tired. Yesterday, I took a 2 hour nap between classes and then a 3 1/2 hour nap at 7pm. Last night, I slept over 12 hours, and want to go back to bed now, even though it is only 8:15pm. Looking back, this is normal for me, but it keeps me from functioning like the average person.

So, here I sit, upset and angry, but trying my best to be as positive as I can, no matter how hard it is.  

I’ve had several people come up to me and say “I read your blog! I know how you feel.. I’m tired all the time, too!” It’s hard for me to respond to people because it’s hard for me to help them understand how “tired” I am. According to the information my sleep doctor gave me, “Being sleepy is part of everyone’s life, so the unimpaired person feels that he can relate to narcoleptic sleepiness. This is doubtful. It has been suggested that, if a normal person stayed awake for three days and nights, and then attempted to solve a complicated problem, the experience would be similar to what a person with narcolepsy lives with daily.”

I’ll end with that so that everyone who is reading this can possibly try to understand what I mean when I say sleepy/tired.

-Megan 

Beyond Narcolepsy

I remember the first time I heard the word “narcolepsy”. I was sitting in math class my sophomore year of high school and we watched a video of Rusty the Narcoleptic Dog. As we watched it over and over, everyone in my class busted out in laughter, including myself.

Many people have heard of narcolepsy. Some of you reading this have probably even seen Tweets from Narcoleptic Ned, a Twitter account where people sent in pictures of themselves “sleeping” in random places, as most people assume all narcoleptics do.

Narcolepsy has been featured in several different movies, and is typically portrayed as very comical occurrences.

Like most people, I found these portrayals hilarious. Now, the word “narcolepsy” will forever be something that I disclose to doctors when they ask me about my medical history. However, contrary to popular belief, I do not just fall asleep any time or any place. Instead, I am constantly tired no matter how many hours of sleep I get. This may not seem like a big deal to many people, but after having it for several years, it has become a serious disruption in almost every area of my life. I find it hard to remember the most simple things, I find it very hard to concentrate, and worst of all, I want to sleep all the time.

In high school, I noticed that when I came back from school, all I wanted to do was sleep. It was hard to force myself to do my homework or study because no matter how hard I tried, I could not get past my sleepiness. However, I brushed it off and accepted it as being normal. I lied to friends after making plans with them because I felt like I needed to sleep instead. I felt lazy, and was often accused of being a flake. However, I felt that I could not function if I didn’t take a nap. My naps were often hours long and I woke up refreshed only to be tired again an hour or so later.

Like I said, I accepted all of this as being the norm in my life and did nothing about it. Recently, I mentioned to my mom that I felt that it was a serious issue and went to see a sleep doctor. I did a sleep study last week, and got the results today.

The next few months (I hope it’s only months) will consist of me trying different medications in order to get this narcolepsy under control.  It will be a journey, and I thank everyone ahead of time for being patient with me. I also want to thank everyone for being patient with me in the past, especially when you thought I didn’t want to hang out with you. I hope this clears up any misunderstandings.

I wanted to start this blog to inspire people to reach their fullest potential in life. I want to show that despite this road block that I apparently have been living with for quite some time, I am able to function to the fullest potential that my body will allow me to, and that I will not let narcolepsy control my life. I am living beyond narcolepsy.

If you have any questions, feel free to ask me! I am just learning more about this sleep disorder, but will be happy to answer any questions anyone has. If you’ve read this far down in my post, thank you. 

Also, I want to let everyone know that I in no way resent anyone for finding the humor in narcolepsy. I myself once laughed at certain videos, pictures, etc. of narcoleptics. I simply want to point out that it truly is a serious condition that can effect several aspects of peoples lives!