Review Of ' The Night Of Sleep Paralysis ' Essay

Review Of ' The Night Of Sleep Paralysis ' Essay

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Sasha is already snoring as Sara sips a mug of black coffee. They fought that night, after dinner with a few old friends from high school. Mutual feelings of stagnation and inadequacy made them both unsure of where their relationship was heading. Sara sat in the kitchen sulking in anger with a lit cigarette between her fingers. Sasha did not like when Sara smoked inside their apartment. This was a protest. She didn’t know what it meant yet, but she knew he could smell the burning nicotine scent linger in the house and that is what she wanted. It was a rule in her head that anytime she was bent by unruly rage during the day or that night, she would almost surely slip into another bout of sleep paralysis. It was like a profane self-punishment she could rarely avoid. The knowledge left her fearful. She drank two full mugs of coffee and now she sits, lighting another cigarette as her cat, Josh creeps around the kitchen crying for attention. Sara’s efforts to avoid sleep are futile. Late night television is a bore and she decides that if she’s gonna meet with the Nightmare tonight, she might as well be lying beside her boyfriend when it happens. She doesn’t even bother to undress, her shirt and jeans accompanying her to bed. Sara falls asleep faster than she anticipated.

As anticipated, it comes again…

The living imprint of a man: The shadow. It is suited, the edged corners of its shoulders squared like a stone surface. It first arrives alone standing in the dark, stuck in a loitering confusion. It holds its breath, not wanting to ruin the atmosphere. It floats more than it walks, even when taking slow and thumping steps. The shadow passes a mirror, its dark body bending in and then out focus. It will pound the walls soon, maybe do ...


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...ure nor assure the human instinct to survive. The brain’s makes doubt into a story conjured from necessity and yet still, there is fear. Logic can apparently only do so much. Just as dreams do, in all of their odd ambiguity, sleep paralysis may be an event that helps solve problems, integrate memories and process emotions. A drowsy, subconscious scavenge for life’s puzzle pieces. Only then do we have to endure the struggle of piecing them all together to achieve some semblance of coherency. Though one wonders what happens when those pieces only swell doubt and thus encourage fear even through a narrative we can grasp. The brain seems to latch onto our fear as a translator, filtering through triggers of distress. It is very seldom that the human mind can release itself fully from fear without great effort. And it is too often that the product of that fear is man-made.

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