Physiologically, sleep paralysis is closely related to the paralysis that occurs as a natural part of REM (rapid eye movement) sleep, which is known as REM atonia. Sleep paralysis occurs when the brain awakes from a REM state, but the body paralysis persists. This leaves the person fully conscious, but unable to move. The paralysis can last from several seconds to several minutes “after which the individual may experience panic symptoms and the realization that the distorted perceptions were false”. As the correlation with REM sleep suggests, the paralysis is not entirely complete; use of EOG traces shows that eye movement can be instigated during such episodes. When there is an absence of narcolepsy, sleep paralysis is referred to as isolated sleep paralysis (ISP).
The other night, I had a really funky nightmare. Like there’s was nothing scary, per se. No monsters, no falling, no death… everything was just WEIRD. I can very vividly remember the thing that woke me up, and it was a picture of a piece of cake and it said “It’s Waiting For You”
Video game nerds need only the attached picture to explain why cake was in my subconscious
Anyways, it’s not weird that I woke up from something stupid I dreamt about. What’s weird is that I woke up in a body I could not control
My eyes opened, and I was able to move them around the room, but I tried to life my arm and nothing happened. Every sensation in my body FELT as if I was moving my arm, but it didn’t respond. It felt like it was asleep x 50, so I figured it was just really asleep. Then I tried to roll over, and I realized I couldn’t move anything.
I even tried opening my mouth to call for Jen (she had left the bathroom light on, so I thought she was home still), nothing. For what I have to believe was a solid 60 seconds, it was probably the most terrifying sensation I’ve ever had.
So has anyone else had this happen to them?