I’ve debated for awhile to let people know that I suffer from this, because of how extreme this phenomenon is. I’ve only told a handful of people about this and most of them are not close family or friends.
Most of you know that I do not sleep well, waking up several times in the night. This is due to a couple of reasons, first it’s because I’m afraid of not waking up to my alarms (I set two). The next reason is because of this strange thing called sleep paralysis. When I have the chance to sleep in and I’m not worrying about being somewhere in the morning is usually when this happens. This first time I remember this happening, I was around 9 or 10 years old. When someone is in a deep sleep and the R.E.M. cycle is occurring, most people have dreams, about wonderful places, flying and great adventures. Well, most of the time, if I ever get to the dreaming stage of sleep, I have violent nightmares. Waking up during these nightmares brings on sleep paralysis. What happens is the body is in its ultimate form of relaxation, so to wake up suddenly, you body cannot move…basically, you’re paralyzed for a minute or two while your body catches up with your brain. If it was just that, I could handle it, but the worst part comes next. I’m somewhat awake and somewhat still in the dream mode, so the mind is still processing the dream while I lay paralyzed looking around the room. This phenomenon causes the dream (or nightmare in my case) to come to life for the few moments, which seems like hours when you see dark images or creatures hovering around you. Most of the time the image I see is a large dark figure, kind of like a grim reaper appearance or similar to the dark shadows from the movie Ghost.
I know this sounds crazy, but it does affect my sleep. I have trained myself to wake up several times in the night before I can get to the dream stage, so I don’t have to deal with this. I’ve been informed that a lot of my health problems are due to the fact I don’t sleep, so last night I took ½ of a sleeping pill allowing me to get through the night. Because I was relaxed and not controlling my timely wake ups, this madness happened. The only reason why I know I’m not crazy is that I had a therapist tell me about this bizarre sleep experience, but if any of you reading this know of a way to control dreams and/or sleep patterns (without the use of drugs), any advice is welcomed.Now y’all know one side of where my craziness comes from and hopefully it didn’t scare you off.