If you don't like reading long narratives, stop here because if you're going to read a part of this, you're also going to read the whole damn thing. And so I begin...
Sleep paralysis is an event that occurs during sleep that takes away your ability to move and speak. You feel as though weights are sinking your body in to your bed and the more you fight, the more you sink and feel helpless. You're aware of this enigma and are entirely aware that your body is holding you prisoner to the strange mind game. This is what it feels like to have a depressive episode.
My story, which I find is the simplest way to call it, begins with a disturbing amount of childhood trauma that effected how I'd view the world in relation to the trauma itself. Once the trauma had happened, been somewhat "processed," and soon, erroneously thinking that I effortlessly put into the back of my mind, it soon resurfaced as those things often do.
All of my most significant depressive episodes start with an angry moment. Things that trigger me, a term we have grown accustomed to hearing so effortlessly falling off of everyone's lips, almost always occur daily. I am triggered by smells, intrusive thoughts, a specific sound, etc. Because the traumatic events that I was involved in are controlled by sensory details, walking around anywhere is tough. Hearing or smelling anything specific triggers a past memory, which can ruin any day.
I was hospitalized for a few nights after taking some sleeping pills, and was then monitored at home. I was able to break my silence with a few friends on why I'd been so "different," but not everyone was going to have that information. The idea of explaining to my friends that i wanted to die and that living with my own thoughts was exhausting seemed so foreign. I didn't want to continue explaining my situation to people.
To bring a rather unorganized story to an end, I'd like to explain that my rock bottom consisted of multiple moments that shook me into a different state of mind. It consisted of hospitalizations, lost friendships, and situations that didn't seem achievable. Although I wasn't always able to come up untouched and content, I was always able to reach the surface breathing. I was able to fight through the muddy concoction of illness and relapse, and I could finally take that I was able to feel the feeling of sleep paralysis was dissipating due to me taking steps in overcoming my mental illnesses.
My rock bottom broke my heart and broke my smile in more ways than one, but my rock bottom has saved my life plenty of times.
Remember, I write this for my coping, and I write this for you to understand what can happen. I hope your breath continues and that you remember why you are ❤️.
National Suicide Prevention Lifeline