Ex Pat Mamma

Friday, April 28, 2006

Primal Fear

Last night, there was a spider walking across my pillow. An ENORMOUS spider. I exaggerate not, it was the size of the circumference of your average coffee mug. That's MUG, not expresso cup. Not expecting such in Iceland, I thought it must be a shadow, but no, it really WAS a spider and it was moving! Blessedly away from me, but that didn't stop me as I leapt from my bed and began screaming hysterically.

At which point, I woke up.

Now, spiders are pretty scary things, especially ones that look like they could swallow a cat without chewing. Waking up to the sound of screaming isn't much fun either, though I have some experience of that, since my darling hubby will ocassionally share one of his nightmares with a blood curdling yell. But when you hear screaming, then realise it is yourself, and yet aren't quite awake enough to stop yourself, don't know where you are or what is going on... well, THAT is scary. Nightmares, I can deal with. Nothing in my life so far compares to the fear of waking up whilst sleepwalking. WHERE AM I? WHY AM I SCREAMING? WHAT ARE YOU DOING HERE (as hubby emerged from the bathroom, looking almost as scared as I felt)? WHAT'S GOING ON? It is unbearably disorientating.

The science boffins shall correct me, but as I understand things, when you sleep, your body goes into a temporary paralysis. Some people suffer from bouts of this paralysis whilst awake - not good if you are crossing a busy high street. In others, the sleep can come without the paralysis at times, and hence sleepwalking. I haven't done it since I was a teenager, and for some reason then only when I was extremely tired. Thank goodness term finishes today (I type as I invigilate the last exam) so hopefully I can get some proper, dreamless, walkingless sleep and not have another run in with blind panic.

Er pupo, light sleeper as he is, that he will wake if we turn the kitchen tap on, didn't even flinch. Hubby wasn't too chuffed though.


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