Cataplexy Caught on Camera – Guest Post by Sally Abboud

by julie on February 18, 2015

sally photobooth cataplexy narcolepsy blogFour lovely ladies walk into a photo booth, one has narcolepsy with cataplexy, her name is Sally. Something is funny and as Sally laughs, the camera perfectly captures the stages of her cataplexy attack.

Screen shot 2015-02-15 at 8.06.46 PMSally (top-middle) describes: This was a photo booth at a friend’s wedding that takes a photo every 5 seconds. The three other ladies with me are my sisters in law. 

 1st-  Carolyn (far left) commented she looked like dame Edna, I obviously burst out laughing… (For those not from Australia, this is dame Edna.)

2nd– I slowly began to fall, finding comfort falling on top of Nat. The other two still haven’t noticed… Nat is calling to them trying to get their attention. I am a dead weight, and obviously Nat is small.

sally photobooth 2
3rd– I’m on Nat and the others are trying to help… I was thinking to myself “Sally, stop. It’s not funny. You really don’t want people seeing you on the floor. They will think you’re drunk. Snap out of it.”
sally photobooth 3
4th– Slowly trying to regain composure while being propped up by my lovely sisters in law. (See positioning of hands)
sally photobooth 4

Luckily my sisters in law are pretty used to my narcolepsy and cataplexy, but I think it was still a bit of a shock to them. Afterward, we showed everyone the photos in amazement that the photo booth had captured all of it.

Sally also writes a lovely blog where she describes more about her experience living with narcolepsy and cataplexy:

Most of my closest friends and family are aware of my disorder but it is definitely something I don’t talk a lot about, especially to those I just meet or don’t know well. Admittedly having a wonderful, supportive husband to explain why I have to sleep so much or why I just collapsed on the ground from laughing has made dealing with it so much easier. 

For two years I was left undiagnosed. Now, I want to do more to raise awareness for Narcolepsy. Even if one more person can help someone in the future to understanding what is happening to them I should speak up. 

Sally AustraliaREM Runner’s Note: Thank you to Sally for sharing. Your experience is so familiar – the happy feelings, toppling over onto the closest object, fighting emotions, and standing back up with eyes still closed…

Cataplexy not easy but it is encouraging to see that Sally is well-supported by her friends and family. We are NOT ALONE. 🙂

What is Cataplexy? Learn more in this video.

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