Life

By Hannah Phillips

A doting wife has to remind her husband every single morning that they’re in love due to a rare condition that causes memory loss.

Christopher Robin Turner, 36, says his life imitates rom-com 50 First Dates as he suffers from narcolepsy – which causes vivid dreams called hypnagogic hallucinations and memory loss – first thing in the morning.

His wife, Chelsea, 28, leaves notes next to his bed explaining his life.

The notes will tell Christopher Robin his name, job, his wife’s name, the name’s of their two six-year-old Australian Cattle dogs, Fox and Panda and explains his condition.

The window fitter, from Victoria, Canada, said: “She’s been writing notes for about six years. It’s really thoughtful of her and I really appreciate it because it’s unexpected for someone to be so completely understanding.

“The notes really help when I wake up in the morning because I know I’m not alone.

“There have been times where I’ve woken up and not recognised her or I’m wandering around the house working out who I am and she asks what I’m doing.

“A few times she said I’ve woken up and just stood there saying I don’t know where I am.

“It’s so hard to explain it but I have two to three dreams per night and they’re so realistic and vivid, I relive my past such as past relationships and when I wake up I’m stuck in the past and don’t know where I am.

“They’re so realistic so if I get stung by a bee in my dream I can physically feel it.

“There have been dreams where I’ve walked for miles on gravel and when I wake up my feet are in pain.

“When I’ve been awake for a while, my body adjusts and I come back.”

Christopher Robin admits that people usually liken his condition to film 50 First Dates, starring Adam Sandler and Drew Barrymore, which sees a woman suffering from short-term memory loss and starting her life afresh every day.

Christopher Robin and Chelsea met at work 10 years ago and confess it was love at first sight with the couple moving in together immediately and marrying five years later.

He said: “After the first date, that was pretty much it, it was love at first sight.

“I was really honest with her when we first met. Lots of narcoleptics get into relationships that don’t last because it’s just as hard on the partner.”

Narcolepsy is a rare long-term brain condition that causes a person to suddenly fall asleep at inappropriate times. It can also cause sudden muscle loss that can be triggered by strong emotions or loud noises.

Christopher Robin was diagnosed when he was 16 when he crashed his car after falling asleep at the wheel.

He said: “At the time, nobody knew about narcolepsy and the internet wasn’t around but when I went to see a neurologist they said I was the most narcoleptic person they’d seen.

“I’m doing quite well with it now I’m older but if I sneeze I need to grab a chair and I make sure I’m sitting down a lot.

“If I get angry I could fall to the floor.