A few nights ago, (actually Sunday night) after going to bed, and on my way to LA-LA land, I realised that I could not move my body to change position in my bed.
Sometimes I sleep on either of my two sides or on my back, but never on my stomach.
I was very much awake, however, I could not move...no matter how much I tried to shift my position, I was burdened by some weight that seemed to be pressing down on my body.
I tried to move my hands to touch my face but to no avail. Just this terrifying feeling of being held down, and as if "something" was in my room.
Now this phenomenon has happened to me about three or four times previously in my life, and it had always scared the hell out of me.
I remembered the first time I experienced it, I was in my bed with my bedroom door open and I could see the light on in the family room, and I could hear the tv on with "The Jeffersons," and I could hear my mum and brother talking and laughing quite clearly.
Yet, there I was being crushed by some unseen weight in my bed, and I was shouting and screaming for them, but no sound was coming out of my mouth. I also had the sensation of my bed falling down down down into some bottomless cavern.
When I eventually got command of my limbs and my mouth again, I jumped up screaming at my mum, why the hell she didn't come when I shouted for her. She said she had heard nothing.
This whole scenario scared the daylights out of me, and having been raised in a Christian household, and been christened/baptised and confirmed and attending church on a regular basis, I wanted to find out what the bejingles was going on.
In checking around, (before internet days), I was made to understand that when we lay down to sleep and our brains and bodies and psyches are at rest, that our souls go wandering while we sleep. Sometimes our souls are captured by devious entities, and they are unable to return to our bodies, and that's when we die in our sleep. WOW!
Needless to say, I was quite afraid after hearing that and always made an extra extra extra extra effort to say my prayers before falling off to sleep at night.
When I worked in the corporate world, my job took me on travels far and wide. I realised that when I traveled with this one particular workmate, that she would leave her hotel room light on all night. I asked her one morning at breakfast why she did this, and she told me that every night "something" would come and visit her and sit on her back and "show her stuff." WHAT!!!!
She was not a nice person to begin with, and after hearing that I kept her at a further distance than before.
Anyway, this time around, I had the internet at my disposal, and I decided to do some research, and here is what I came up with.
First of all, the sensation has a name.....Sleep Paralysis. Happens to most of us.
When you are experiencing Sleep Paralysis, don't fight it, just go with the flow.
You should try wiggling your toe or clenching your fist to try breaking the spell.
Also coughing and controlled breathing are helpful.
The best way they say to get out of it, is to scrunch up your face, apparently this method works all the time.
Guess which one I'll be using the next time this terrifying sensation has my body in its hold again.
Or if you have an extra US$19.00 knocking around, you may also order a Sleep Paralysis Kit.
Here is a link for you to read up more.