My breathing is shallow...ragged breaths, my eyes are open. I see darkness only. I try to move, I can't, I feel trapped. Someone help me! I can't move.

That loud distorted voice is next to your ear, evil whispering. Make it stop. Please. Make it stop. Pull yourself out of it. Move your arms! Wake up!

Sleep paralysis is a phenomenon in which an individual, either during falling asleep or awakening, briefly experiences an inability to move, speak, or react. This is a transitional state between wakefulness and sleep, characterized by an inability to move muscles. It is often accompanied by terrifying hallucinations to which one is unable to react due to paralysis, and physical experiences (such as strong current running through the upper body).

I started to have sleep paralysis when I was about nineteen years old; the first time it ever happened it left me insanely horrified to the point I couldn't fall back asleep when I woke myself out of it. I remember it being pitch black, I open my eyes and begin to hyperventilated. There was such a heaviness on my chest and I couldn't move. I think that's what scared me the most, I was trapped. I could see the darkness around me, but I couldn't even budge. I literally sent myself into a panic attack and then finally I snapped out of it. That first time was the only time where it wasn't that bad...the next few times would make for a good horror movie.

The second time it happened I was alone, I was in a half awake, half asleep state and I was partially dreaming. I dreamt I was in a room and a tall, shadowy figure was in my room. It was terrifying because the shape of it was like the classic vampire Nesfaratu. I start hyperventilating and then the noise starts. First it sounded like white noise, then it progressively got scarier. It sounded like there was a deep, gravely demonic voice right next to my head. Ever see the movie The Babadook? It was that sound.

It got louder and louder, the hairs on the back of neck stood up, my stomach started to churn and I couldn't stop it. I squeeze my eyes shut and whimper until it was over. That experience could've only happened for less than a minute but it felt like two hours. I always thought I was crazy, having these vivid hallucinations of demonic sounds or figures but it turns out sleep paralysis is a thing. And it's very common. I noticed that when I have sleep paralysis it's only when I'm extremely tired or if I'm alone. I would experience this three nights a week. I purposely didn't sleep because I was too scared to close my eyes and have to hear those awful sounds. That's when my insomnia started. I was literally living my own Nightmare On Elm Street because I was afraid to sleep.

I'm sure plenty of people have experienced this. Everyone will have a different story when it comes to this. I'm lucky enough to have not had an experience like that in almost a year. I did more research and came across another article about sleep paralysis. There is a scientific explanation for it:

"Sleep paralysis occurs when the brain and body aren't quite on the same page when it comes to sleep. During rapid eye movement (REM) sleep, dreaming is frequent, but the body's muscles are relaxed to the point of paralysis, perhaps to keep people from acting out their dreams. Researchers have found that two brain chemicals, glycine and GABA, are responsible for this muscle paralysis." (Livescience.com - What Makes Sleep Paralysis Scary)

The supernatural occurrence happens if you are having a night terror or an out of body experience. Almost like your soul is watching over your body. They did a study and women are more common to have this happen then men. I'm a firm believer in the paranormal, I've had experiences, witnessed things. My theory is when sleep paralysis happens, what you see and feel are real. Even if that something is considered evil. What if that entity in the room is w form of evil trying to possess your soul? That's why you can't breathe? What if the reason why we wake up so fast is because we're too strong of people to let it take over? I may sound crazy, but that's a strong theory I've always had. If you're someone who has an open mind to different things supernatural, this could make sense to you. It makes sense to me. Scientifically, there's a solution and it's not paranormal. I call bull, because I've been terrified way too much when it comes to this.