Completely Paralyzed… Twice.

Whatever happens to be on my mind… thoughts, memories, desires, moments captured. Unrestricted by criteria, deadlines, expectations, or requests.
 

This is what I have dedicated myself to sharing within Eyes and Ears. You see what I see, we hear each other, we listen to each other. This type of content naturally lends itself to both positive and negative topics. This one will be positively negative… but it will be interesting! (At least I think so)

I have now experienced complete paralysis- twice.

“How is it possible that you could be paralyzed twice? Wouldn’t you stay paralyzed after the first time? And wait… when were you paralyzed to start off with?!”

Well folks, what I am about to describe completely answers those questions. I have to say that out of all the things that I have gone through in my life, this places in the Top 10 Most Terrifying:

Today for my lunch break I ventured out to my car to eat and take a quick nap. Part one of my plan went perfectly smoothly. I ate my monterey chicken sandwich then kicked my chair back to catch some Z’s. I fell asleep relatively quickly, the sun warming my body as I nestled in. I set the alarm on my phone 20 minutes ahead so that I would wake up on time. Off to sleep I went. 10 minutes before I was supposed to wake up, I woke up. Well, my conscious self woke up. The rest of my body laid motionless.  I knew I was awake. I could look around, see the car, look at the time, and feel the breeze flowing around me. When I tried to sit up, however, I couldn’t move. It felt as if my arms, legs, chest, and neck were strapped to my seat. The only thing that I could move was my hands. I struggled time and again to lift myself up. Time and again I failed. I was helpless. I was terrified.

I didn’t know what to do. I couldn’t call anybody on my phone- my phone was beyond the reach of my hands. I couldn’t move my arm to grab it. I couldn’t honk the horn to alert somebody of my distress. I couldn’t even raise my seat up to see outside. I was alone. I was paralyzed.

I laid there for 10 minutes completely motionless and afraid. Right before my alarm was scheduled to go off, a lady walked by my car. I cried out to her-

“HEY! Help me! Please! Help!”

She continued on her path, unaware of what was happening. I cant say that I blame her. How often do you walk by someone laying still in their car and asking for help? haha So, I continued to attempt to lift my body. These attempts were unsuccessful. Finally, after my alarm sounded, my mind decided it would be a good time to unlock my muscles. I could move again. I sat up, shook myself to make sure I was really awake, and stumbled back into my office.

Like I said, Top 10 Most Terrifying. It really shook me. (For the second time)

Yes, this was now the second time that I had experienced this paralysis. It had happened once before when I was sleeping at my home. The last time it occurred I thought it was just some fluke dream or something. I was at the end of a dream where I was being evaluated by nurses due to some type of ailment. They instructed me to lay down. My eyes opened and I regained consciousness as soon as I had laid down completely. Laying there on my bed, my entire body was stiff and I couldn’t move. This time, not even my hands could move. It was equally frightening, and, to add to the situation, the nurses were still in my room. They were hallucinations. My mother was still awake and I tried to call out to her. Nothing came out of my mouth. I couldn’t even speak. Eventually, my body came to.

Now that I had experienced this twice, I knew it wasn’t just a fluke. Something was really going on, so I did some research. As it turns out, many people have gone through the same exact thing. This condition even had a medical definition. It is called Sleep Paralysis.

“What Is Sleep Paralysis?

Sleep paralysis is a feeling of being conscious but unable to move. It occurs when a person passes between stages of wakefulness and sleep. During these transitions, you may be unable to move or speak for a few seconds up to a few minutes. Some people may also feel pressure or a sense of choking. Sleep paralysis may accompany other sleep disorders…

Sleep paralysis usually occurs at one of two times. If it occurs while you are falling asleep, it’s called hypnagogic or predormital sleep paralysis. If it happens as you are waking up, it’s called hypnopompic or postdormital sleep paralysis…

At the end of NREM, your sleep shifts to REM. Your eyes move quickly and dreams occur, but the rest of your body remains very relaxed. Your muscles are “turned off” during REM sleep. If you become aware before the REM cycle has finished, you may notice that you cannot move or speak.”

– http://www.webmd.com/sleep-disorders/guide/sleep-paralysis

This is what happened to me. I regained consciousness towards the end of my REM cycle, but my body did not wake up along with it. So… with that experience under my belt, I can say that I learned something out of a terrible experience.

“You learn something new everyday”

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