Tiffani has narcolepsy with cataplexy and restless leg syndrome. She was first diagnosed with narcolepsy type 2 in August 2020 at age 44. After six months of treatment for excessive daytime sleepiness (EDS) she reached out to her sleep doctor to let him know despite her best efforts to go to bed and wake up at the same time every day, she was getting less and less sleep, and her EDS was getting worse. Her provider prescribed a sodium oxybate treatment for sleep, and for the first time in her adult life, she was able to sleep restfully. Starting treatment also led her to realize that the loss of feeling in her legs while driving over bridges (something Tiffani feared) was, in fact, cataplexy. In March of 2021, Tiffani was officially diagnosed with narcolepsy type 1 (narcolepsy with cataplexy).
Tiffani had a long journey to diagnosis- first reporting symptoms at age 22 and being told it was depression and anxiety. She felt it could not be because she loved life and she had nothing to be depressed about. For over 20 years she visited doctor after doctor who tested her for arthritis and lupus giving her a clean bill of health each time. The pandemic slowed her down and that is when insomnia and panic attacks led her to finally being diagnosed.
Now, Tiffani is a 45-year-old, fun-loving mother of three children, ages 22, 15, and 13. Today, just over one year since receiving her diagnosis, Tiffani feels like a human again. This did not come easily and she has to continue working on self-care and self-love daily. She would like to share how her experiences with medication, diet, exercise, social support and self-love has enabled her to feel this way.
Tiffani confesses that she is not a writer by any means, but hopes sharing her stories will strike a chord with readers and inspire them to try different routines and lifestyle changes that will help them feel alive again.
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