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article imageArtist draws picture of her sleep paralysis demon

By James Walker     Nov 27, 2014 in Odd News
A sleep paralysis-plagued artist has attempted to overcome her intense nighttime hallucinations by controlling the terror and drawing the demon that stalks her mind.
People who have experienced sleep paralysis often report an inability to move, speak or react to external factors. It is usually accompanied by vibrant, terrifying visual hallucinations, such as in this case of a hideous demon creature.
Sleep paralysis is a rare phenomenon that can occur as a person falls asleep or wakes up. Linked to medical issues like migraines and increased anxiety, its defining characteristic is a complete loss of muscle control and strength, called muscle atonia.
The transitional state between waking and sleep is thought to originate from disrupted REM sleep. This deep-sleep stage normally induces muscle atonia to prevent the sleeper from acting out their dreams but if suddenly broken it is possible that the muscle atonia stays in effect for a while longer as the body wakes.
Posted to Reddit, the contributor has explained that the artist regularly suffers from sleep paralysis. This combines with her overly-active imagination to create the vision of the creature lurking in her bedroom corner that she has had for her entire life.
Writing on her blog, the artist says “This is entirely different subject matter than the humorous nature of the rest of my comics. But it’s very personal and I decided to post it anyways. I didn’t exactly make this creature up. I get sleep paralysis terribly. happen to hallucinate the same creature almost every night. He isn’t pleasant. He’s been haunting me for as far back as I can recall, so I decided that maybe if I try drawing him, I will feel more in control of him rather than victimized. Here he is. I have yet to find out if this will help me or backfire."
She created the drawing from memory in pencil and then used PhotoShop to add some colour. It is obviously a very personal illustration of a lifetime tormentor but she hopes that it may actually give her some relief from her nighttime terrors by giving her a chance to "own" it and gain control of it. Certainly, it is an interesting artistic piece though of a demonic being that is not so much a conventional fantasy but a developed, recurring horror. It also gives others a small insight into what people affected by sleep paralysis experience as they are unable to relate or respond as it occurs.
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