**(as performed at the Narcolepsy Network's 2006 Dallas Convention Improv Session)
It was 2002 when my family grieved the loss of my Great Uncle Vernon to Pancreatic Cancer. Vernon was my Paternal Grandma's big brother. After his funeral and burial, my Mom,Dad, Sister, Brother-in-Law, and I joined my Grandparents Nesmith at their home to reflect on the good times, memories we were blessed with Uncle Vernon.
I hadn't had very much sleep, and as a person with narcolepsy such can affect the severity of our symptoms. My family and I always have a great time visiting and talking to each other, and like them, I have a very active creative sense of humor at the core of my being and personality. My Sister, my Dad, and my Brother-in-Law are hilarious and make you laugh so heartily, quickly it can get dangerous for myself via cataplexy. One tiny re-quote from funny films, memories often floored me into cataplexy for many moments at a time. I had created a funny comeback to our playful debate, but couldn't voice but a pathetic peep, TAZED by Narcolepsy's Cataplexy triggered by finding my own comebacks hilarious.
My Dad didn't believe that cataplexy leaves me conscious or lucid for several to many aspects of sleep. Like millions of others uneducated that cataplexy as a common symptom of Narcolepsy, Dad Dearest was incorrect.... tons. Of course when I became a soft formless paralyzed form of muscular and connective tissue mush, Dad assumed I was experiencing a traditional sleep attack, he thought it impossible for me to behalf awake and able to willfully move.
My Grandma Vivian began saying "Oh my gosh Rachel passed out!"
Mom- "Don't make her laugh!" Omg how many times do I have to tell you."
Dad- "I didn't do it!" "It's part of the narcolepsy she passes out when she laughs. Catasomthing?"
Sister- "Mom you make it worse over panicking -Rachel hears everything and finds it funny."
Grandma- "So she passes out asleep while laughing?"
Dad- "I think so. Rachel says she is aware during this state, I don't know..."
Then Dad Said, "Rachel, if you can really hear us, the secret word is Pomegranate."🍅
The speculations and panic ensues for 20 more minutes until this Cataplexy attack released me from its chains. I stood up slowly, smiling and laughing in my head, holding onto Mom, took 3 steps towards Dad ....
Me- "Dad, the secret word is Fworbidwen Frwuit" (slurring my speech as I instantly recollapsed in Cataplexy). No one questions me now-- be careful - in cataplexy and sleep paralysis I can hear everything you say!