If narcolepsy were an animal, it would not be something cute and cuddly, like a sleepy kitten or puppy. Narcolepsy is not something to snuggle up to, enjoy, or love. I doubt any chronic illness is. Though narcolepsy may, on occasion, may make us fall asleep on our knitting and that might be kind of cute.
No, if narcolepsy were an animal it would be something really bad-tempered and ugly, something that bites when disturbed. Have you ever met anyone with narcolepsy who likes to be awakened? Someone who is cheerful when disturbed from their slumber? I’ve known people who have been punched and kicked while trying to wake up their narcoleptic child!
Also, narcolepsy would have to be a cold-blooded animal since the brain damage narcolepsy causes gives our bodies difficulty with temperature regulation. The animal would also have to be nocturnal since so many of us with narcolepsy find it easier to stay awake at night than during the day.
If narcolepsy were an animal, it would be something like a brown recluse spider. It likes to hide in warm, dry places and bites when disturbed. It is cold-blooded and it is more active at night. It is hideously ugly, like the disease that robs our brains of the chemical it needs for everything from sleep regulation to metabolism. Like narcolepsy, once it bites you are scarred for life.
And if you whine about it, if might offer to play “My Heart Bleeds for You” on the world’s tiniest violin, the one on it’s back.
It makes you want to step on it and squish it, or run, screaming away from it. If it were only so easy to squish narcolepsy.