Have you ever experienced the loss of movement and inability to talk or scream out? Well I’m not talking about being wasted after a skinful down the local boozer, I am in fact describing two of the many symptoms of sleep paralysis.
The first time it happened to me, I absolutely shit myself! I didn’t know what the hell was going on, and I didn’t know if I would live through the night to find out. I remember it feeling like I had only just closed my eyes for a second, but then in an instant I was hit by this extremely loud buzz noise which echoed as it sounded, attacking my nervous system and jump starting me awake. My instant reaction was to jump up and out of bed, but as I tried to sit upright I couldn’t, I was physically rooted to the spot and no matter how hard I focused my mind on wriggling free, I was just left with a feeling of desperation and vulnerability.
I wanted to scream for help at the top of my voice, but I couldn’t, all I could manage was a feeble moan from the back of my throat while the build up of saliva spilled from the edges of my mouth. Little did I know this was only the start of things to come, because the moment I realised I still at least had control over the movement of my eyes, I looked down along my body to my feet, to try and identify what the heavy object was pinning my legs to the bed, and I saw a dark figure sat on top of me. The figure appeared motionless and transparent, and made no noises or indications to what his or her intention was, but my heart sank and began to drown in fear and dread. I could only assume I was going to be killed, for whatever reason this ghost had to want to reveal itself to me could only be for something horrible, otherwise why would it be sat on me? And why had it paralysed me, leaving me with only the function of my eyes in order to make me have to watch what it had in mind.
All I knew is that I had to escape from the dark magic that had me invisibly gagged and bound. I pressed and probed with my mind mentally wrestling to free my body from its trap, harder and harder I focused all of my energy to move, and then like the flick of a switch I sprang into life, so quick that I cranked my neck as I flung myself bolt upright off the bed and onto the floor. But before I got up to race out of the door I took a second as I noticed a feeling of calm softly sweeping through me and leaving me feeling almost invigorated, as if I had just been reborn. And so, as I sat there, in the dark, confused as to what had just happened to me, I took a breath, picked myself up and switched on the light.
Danny Gouldson is a 31 year old man-child, who resides on the dukeries in the City of Culture 2017. He enjoys discovering new hobbies but loses interest very quickly. He isn’t making any predictions for his future or any solid plans until he has experienced his full mid life crisis.