Tuesday, March 25, 2014

An Introduction Of Sorts.

My name is Matthew. I like to write/tell stories. I'm a husband and father of four. Every day I battle the sinister shackles of sleep and its demons of dream.

Sound strange enough? Do I have your attention, or at the very least your curiosity? I'll settle for your passing glance to be honest.

My point here is a rather mundane and simple one; to establish some idea of who I am to those just discovering me. And for those who have known me for awhile this can serve as a refresher course. There may be a test on this in the near future.

My initial introduction is a fairly boiled down base of the myriad of aspects I suppose one might use to describe me. But they are all true - even the waging the war for being awake. As surreal as it sounds I spend the majority of my day dealing with the monumental effort of remaining conscious. In that attempt I have my share of victories and defeats. I never quite know if I've drifted into a waking dream or if that tingling feeling in my left side is a chill or the fact that I am in the process of becoming paralyzed.

Around 2009 I was diagnosed with Narcolepsy with Cataplexy. Over the time since then I have had to come to grips with some uncomfortable concessions. For one, my day always begins with a cup of coffee and 40mg of Ritalin. Around four hours later I rinse and repeat. What that means is I take the medically allowed maximum of a commonly recognized stimulant just to give me a fighting chance of not being a zombie.

In case you need to further punctuate that little point, consider this: I can take as much Ritalin in one dose that some people take over an entire day. And right after, rather easily I must add, I can quite honestly take a nap. Let that sink in for a minute.

Added to that constantly nagging pull of drowsiness I have to accept that my left side can go limp at any time. I've used a cane so much with my right over the last few years to support myself while dragging my left leg when I have trouble that I believe I have passed my wrists serviceable limits. I just had Carpal Tunnel Release surgery on it the past November (on my birthday in fact - poetic irony anyone?).

Now I don't drive anymore. I don't work anymore. I very very rarely do much of anything alone either.

But don't get me wrong; I do have a life.

I enjoy reading (or writing) a good story or book. I walk my kids down for the bus every day and get them off the bus. I check the mail, my wife and I go to the store - there are lots of ways for me to spend my time. Even if there are times things manage to get the best of me, I try not to let depression win.

It isn't easy, I won't lie. But I have a wonderful wife to support me and a family the likes of which would make saints jealous.

So if your ever curious where these stories come from, they come from an imagination that never stops. It comes from dreams that aren't content to remain to the nocturnal hours. They are born of a brain that must be kept busy. So I keep it busy and if I am really lucky I get to make someone else smile.

I do it for the happy.

Making people happy makes me happy.

Are you happy?

If so I'm happy.