someone who's spent most of my life dozing off in inappropriate places
(like high school chemistry class and crazy loud action movies and the
occasional dentist's chairs), I've always sort of half-joked,
half-wondered about being narcoleptic. Of course I'm not actually
narcoleptic, but being mildly sleepy all the time stinks, so I can't
even begin to think how difficult things must be for 17-year-old Nicole Delien: The Pennsylvania teen suffers from Kleine-Levin Syndrome, otherwise known as "Sleeping Beauty Syndrome," an incredibly rare condition that forces her to sleep 18 to 19 hours a day, sometimes for 34 to 62 days in a row. Nicole once fell asleep before Thanksgiving and didn't wake up until January! Can you imagine watching your seemingly healthy child sleep through the entire holiday season?!
Because when she's not having one of her "episodes," Nicole's mom Vicki Delien
says: “She's just a normal kid. She's a very happy, bubbly teenage girl
who enjoys everything and tries to be happy. When she goes into an
episode, it just tears everything apart."
Doesn't it break your heart? And there's no cure for
Kleine-Levin Syndrome, either (though some medications, including
stimulants, can help to keep episodes at bay). But the worst part must
have been the 25 months Nicole suffered with Kleine-Levin before doctors
figured out what was going on. Only about 1,000 people have the
disorder, so it's still hard to diagnose -- Nicole was told she had
either epilepsy or West Nile Virus.
At least she knows the truth, finally, and doctors hope she will
eventually grow out of her worst symptoms. For now, though, Nicole is
pretty tired of being tired.
"She's 17 now and it really upsets her. She's missed out on a lot,"
says Vicki. Awww. Well, one thing's for sure -- if and when Nicole gets
better, she's definitely going to live her life to the fullest!
One of our friends has this but not as bad as the girl in the article...he is totally out of it when he has an episode. He cant think normally and sleeps a lot. We went to visit him once when he was having an episode and we told him we had to leave to go pick up john(our ds) and after thinking about it for a minute he said(because his name is john too) "but im right here". He cant really comprehend what people are saying. The drs said it usually goes away by the age of 25 but he is 28 and still having episodes...
Man, I thought my parents thought I was bad sleeping all the time. I could sleep for a couple of days. But never knew that was a condition people had. I don't think I had that though. I feel bad for the girl because she is literally sleeping her life away and can't help it. Poor girl.