I have sleep issues. In fact, I've had sleep issues my entire life.
As a child, there was many a night that my parents would see me running through the house in my underwear. Sometime I would be screaming or crying. Sometimes just on the prowl. When questioned about this the next morning, I would have no recollection of anything from the previous night. It was like my own personal "Raising Cain."
I later took a psychology course, and found that as a child, I suffered from "night terrors." My sleep issues continued sporadically into my teen years, but then transitioned into a different type of dream. I don't think I have to spell it out--but take a 16 year old boy, start the natural hormone juices flowing in his body, and he'll be in a happy place. And you also have to wash your sheets frequently. I digress.
In my 20's, my bodies hormonal system regained equilibrium, and the "naughty" dreams ceased. But a new phenomenon started taking place.
I will try to explain this accurately:
There is a state right in between sleep, and being fully awake where you posses all your faculties. For me, generally this occurs after I've been sleeping for some amount of time, and wake up in the middle of the night. Sometimes this "middle state" lasts a few seconds, and sometimes a few minutes.
While in this "state," my conscious mind is not in complete control of my body. I see things. I do things. And these things are not normal.
There are the humorous stories that my wife likes to tell everyone. These generally garner enormous laughs...especially in large groups.
There was the time that she saw me "army-crawling" across the ground.
Another time, she saw me out of the bed, just peering over the edge looking at her.
This is easily explained. Most of the time when I wake up in the night, I have no idea who I'm sleeping next to. Now, I realize that many of you have this problem, and you actually don't know this person you met that night in a drunken stupor in a bar---But this is my wife---every time.
I usually wake up, and feel very afraid that this stranger lying in the bed will see me in my underwear. So I usually tip-toe, crawl, or make my way to the closet in order to put some clothes on.
There was the time that I saw something on the wall, and used my "hand-gun" (literally, my hand shaped like a gun) to shoot it.
Most of the time, I rouse myself after a minute or two, and realize where I am, and what I'm doing. Then I go pee, and head back to bed. No harm done.
But it isn't all fun and games. I also see people in this "state."
It started with kids. I started seeing children walking through my room when I'd wake up. I'm not talking about seeing my future children requesting that the wife and I "get it on" like something you'd hear in a church service.
I'm talking about kids that just stare at me.
At times, I'll see them looking over the foot of my bed. Just looking.
Other times, they'd be walking through the room, on the way out of my bedroom.
I'll see them hiding in my closet, looking out at me from behind my clothes.
To say I was scared would be under-stating the situation. As a 28 year old man, I would pull the blanket over my head, until I awoke from this "middle state," and everything would be normal after a few minutes. A cursory walk through the house obviously showed no lost children. It's obvious that my subconscious mind loves to play tricks on me in this "state."
And then I started seeing adults.
At first I would just see someone peering around the open door frame, only the tops of their head and eyes visible. Just looking. The first time I thought I saw an adult man in our house, I went through every room and closet to ensure that nobody was in the house.
I've seen more than one adult, standing in the next room, just looking at me.
I remember the time I had trouble sleeping, and went downstairs to sleep on the couch. I awoke later to see a large group of kids standing outside, looking at me through the blinds.
Of particular note, there was the time that my family was out of town, and I awoke to see a man standing in my bathroom. I could only see his profile and face, and the closest match in appearance was to the preacher from Poltergeist. I didn't sleep with the bathroom door open from that point on.
The way I see it, there are 3 different explanations for my problem.
One is that there are truly people in my house. I think I've debunked this, as I've never found anyone in the house.
Another scenario is that I actually see ghosts, apparitions, spirits, etc. They aren't your "chicken soup for the soul" type of ghosts either. These ghosts do not make me feel "warm all over."
Lastly, is that my subconscious mind creates these elaborate visions that are only seen when I'm in this state of waking up. As soon as my rational mind takes control, it is obvious that nothing is in the room. This may be the worst scenario of all!! I don't want "A Beautiful Mind 2--the sequel" to be based on my life.
We've lived in 3 houses, and I've seen these things in all of them. I'm pretty sure that there isn't an Indian graveyard under all 3, so I doubt that's the issue.
I don't think I've "wronged" anyone so that they would haunt me in the after-life.
I wasn't abused or molested as a kid....I've never dabbled in hardcore drugs that would alter my state of reality...I'm not really into the occult. (I do watch Battlestar Galactica, which is a sci-fi show)
I'm not sure what issues I have, but I wish it would stop. Tylenol PM, NyQuil, sleeping pills...they don't help. It doesn't matter if I'm exhausted, I'll still have problems.
I've left out the REALLY scary moments, as they disturb me deeply, and would not translate well into written word.
It could be worse...and for my wife it is.
Imagine waking up and seeing your husband acting out scenes from "Nightmare on elm street." That would be scary. I think she just rolls over and goes back to sleep...I think she's afraid to interact with me in this "state." I mean...she is a stranger and all. Who knows what I'd do to her??