From a young age I’ve always been scared of the dark. I would have screaming nightmares where my Mum would have to come and calm me down in the middle of the night and was terrified to sleep without the hall light on.
Fast forward 30 years and I’m still that person. Although I no longer sleep with the light on I still have an irrational fear of the dark. If the lights are suddenly turned off without me expecting I either get angry or my heart races to my mouth and my breath races. Our house is very creaky as it’s warming up and cooling down and these noises are bearable if I’m in a lit room with other people but at night in bed my head turns them into the sound of someone walking along the hallway. It’s always someone walking towards our bedroom in my mind, this is why I’ve never been able to sleep with my back to the bedroom door. I need to be able to see what is coming.
Still all these years later these thoughts will keep me awake for hours and end up with me becoming terrified of nothing. Too scared to let go of the covers but melting with how hot I’ve become. When I finally fall asleep I dream. These are vivid dreams of either someone in the room or something in the bed and I don’t just dream, every once in a while I will wake up screaming full pelt and my husband has to calm me down. Either that or i will jump out of the bed in my sleep and start checking it for whatever was in it in my dream that night.
These nightmares don’t last for long and sometimes don’t amount to full on screaming but just waking with a start with my heart racing. These times I don’t wake Scott and mostly just lay there scared until I fall back to sleep again.
This is something I’ve had since I was a child and I’ve honestly no idea how to stop it. I’ve never talked to anyone about it or looked into anything that could be the trigger or might help and I’m writing about it here for the first time because I’m ready for it to stop now.
I know these fears are irrational and as a parent I would explain the same to my daughter were she to have them but how can I when I’m still having them myself?