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Sleep Paralysis

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Estimated reading time — 3 minutes

I’ve struggled with very lucid nightmares since I was very young. Even in my crib I had nightmares that I remember to this day. I used to sleep with a night light and my door was left wide open at all times. I felt as if I was more in control if I could see what was outside of my room. I felt more prepared that way. Then I experienced sleep paralysis. Since then I’ve found myself inclined to lock my door before I sleep.

If you’ve never heard of something called sleep paralysis, consider yourself lucky. Very lucky.

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When we fall asleep we enter what is called REM sleep. During this phase the physical body is held in place to keep us from sleep walking or flailing about during a dream. Sleep paralysis occurs when REM sleep is interrupted.

You are left in a half conscious state, unable to make out whether or not you are awake. You feel as if you are in between two different planes of existence. Your vision is blurred, you can’t seem to shut your eyes yet at the same time you fight to keep them open. You are left scared and confused. Then you realize that you can’t move.

Paralysis.

It is as if a wrecking ball is holding your entire body down against your mattress. The more you try to move and break free the more terrifying it becomes.

The sounds start to kick in. Scraping, dripping, breathing, groaning… It is impossible to tell where the sounds are coming from because they surround you. You keep fighting and they keep getting louder; closer. You finally gain more control over your vision. You can see a bit more now; you feel relief.

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But only for a brief moment.

Suddenly you wish you could go completely blind as you see a dark entity standing at your doorway bent over as if its spine had been snapped in 4 different directions. Its unnatural shape and height somehow managing to squeeze itself into your room. It gently caresses the wall as if to show that the only thing it intends on hurting is you. Its grossly long, sharp fingertips extend to puncture the wallpaper like the tip of an IV, injecting the walls with black. Your heartbeat is like a drum in both ears. You can hear your own blood sloshing; adrenaline shooting up your spine. Every inch of your body tingles and screams at you to fight or flee but you are chained down by the presence of this horrifying entity.

It stands and stares, breathing hoarsely as if its lungs have been punctured a thousand times.

Its skin, if you can even call it that, a dead grey, ripped and sagging as if gravity had overpowered its body.

Its eyes; two black holes devoid of life or soul.

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Its mouth; no bottom jaw. Just a limp top line of sharp teeth dripping with blood and mucus leading down to its exposed neck. You can see its tendons and torn muscle struggling to keep the creature upright.

The room smells of what I can only describe as a bloody, sweaty rag left to rot in the sun. The stench is nauseating, but you fight to keep it down. You would choke and drown in your own vomit if you let your stomach get the best of you.

You try to look around; look at anything but the creature, but the rest of your room is pitch black. You feel as if this thing has punctured your eyes with needles and string, pulling at them and forcing you to watch as it inches closer, staining your carpet with bloody, inhuman footprints.

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It makes its way onto your bed, crawling and twitching like a wounded scorpion. Its neck cracks and its fingers unhinge to stroke your cheek. You feel ice cold breath against your face; your heart is beating out of your chest and into your esophagus. It tries to stuff its fingers into your mouth, scraping at the sides of your tongue and the back of your throat. You struggle to breath as you wriggle your fingers and toes fighting to break the paralysis.

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It all goes black. It is silent.

A few minutes pass.

Your vision returns to you. You are free to move again.

You’re awake. You’re in your room again, safe and sound. No creature, no horrid scent, no cold breath, no demonic fingers scraping inside of your mouth. It was all in your head.

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You take a sip of water and a deep breath before laying down and attempting to sleep once more. Your heartbeat slows and your muscles loosen. You’re finally calm again.

You take one final glance at your doorway to reassure yourself that no matter how real it felt, it was all just a nightmare.

But what is this taste of blood on your tongue?

Credit : Luna

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