I shoot up in bed sweat pouring from my body, the sheets clinging tightly all around me. I try to adjust my eyes to the light, while they are darting from one corner of the room to another. I know he is here I heard his footsteps on the stairs. He is coming closer and closer to me with ever step that he takes. Suddenly it’s all out there in front of me, the memory of his breath on my face, the rancid taste in my mouth. Invading my body whilst I am unable to move paralysed with fear. Why can’t I see him? The light was playing tricks with my vision. I know that he is here somewhere, was this some other trick he had perfected? I start to feel sick bile escaping from my stomach; a burning sensation at the back of my throat is making me gag. I curl up in a tight ball tucking in my hands and feet, the smaller I become the more of a chance I have of not being seen. My heart is beating so hard it feels as if it will burst right out of my chest, I had to quieten it down the noise would bring him right to me. I take a big gulp of air and hold my breath. This time someone would come they just had to, all along knowing that nobody would they never did. There’s a scream trying to escape my mouth. I bite the inside of my lip and concentrate on the pain, anything but the monster I knew was only inches away from me. I’m suddenly aware of the bitter taste of blood but I had to keep biting down hard, it was the only way to stop the scream from escaping. I know he is just behind me, I could hear each breath that he took in the deathly silence. Maybe it will be over quickly, I could just close my eyes until he was done with me. Why was the wait before he found me far worse than the act? Was it the fear of the unknown? A fearful emotion which I still had some control over? Once found I would lose all control, all the power would become his. I was too big I had to make myself smaller. Panic stricken I was thrown into a state of intense fear and desperation. The air was filled with apprehension not unlike waiting for a snake to strike. It’s so sudden when he does that it knocks the wind out of me, his crazed mad eyes reminding me that he was in charge and that he always would be. I won’t tell who was I fooling? No one would believe me, they would take me away and put me in a children’s home. I scream but there is no sound, the scream I had been holding in until it almost choked me had now dissipated.
I’m now wide awake having found myself in a dream within a dream. I feel utterly wasted, just as if I had been in a prise fight. I look around the room only to find that I am all alone. I lower my head back on to the pillow its two o’clock in the morning, any more sleep this night would be lost to me. This situation had been going on for so long, the fear of closing my eyes whilst fully aware of where that would take me. How do you close your eyes in the knowledge of the dark place waiting for you? You feel yourself drifting sleep is almost yours. You are just so tried maybe tonight the dreams won’t come, you fight to stay awake your eyes stringing with the required effort. You know it’s only time before exhaustion takes over. The doctor offers you medication; that’s not a choice you can make sleep is the enemy. Living your life in a loop it seems on a never ending merry-go-round. You feel as if there will never be an end to the nightmares; I am here to tell you that there positively is. Our dreams are our own subconscious thought’s. No one else has access to the deeply troubled and vivid memories inside our heads. We are having these nightmares because we have still not dealt with the fundamental cause. There are so many things to do during the day that can occupy the mind, we busy ourselves; there is not enough time to dwell. But when the lights go out and we climb in to our bed there is nothing waiting there for us but our thoughts. So how do we change that? The answer is to deal with our issues one at a time, during our waking hours where there are distractions. You can then take strength from those around you, they may not even be aware that you are doing so but they don’t have to be. Ask yourself this question; is it better to deal with your demons in the day light hours or all alone in the hours of darkness? I’m sure you will arrive at the same conclusion I did. Don’t run if you need to walk, go at a pace that suits you and you alone. Even tiny steps will turn into strides if you make enough of them. There will come a day when the only thing waiting for you in the turbulence you have suffered, will be a peaceful welcoming sleep. Take heart, take courage, and above all believe. It is achievable and yes you can take my word on that………….

Author's Bio: 

Teresa Joyce was born in 1958 the middle child of three. After losing her father at a very young age; it was to set the pattern for the rest of her life. Losing was something that she would have to get used to. Today she still has some memory of her father, but in truth it’s all a little hazy. Her mother through no fault of her own after that loss had no other alternative, then to return to her parent’s home with her children in tow. This family unit were to spend only a few years there, until the wind of change came around once more. Teresa still holds many happy memories from her time there as a child. Happy memories are something that Teresa holds in very short supply, and she has treasured them always. Her mother was set to meet the man that was to become her stepfather, and they moved on once more to a new city with the promise of a new life. Hopefully it would be a happy one for all concerned, but it became a place for Teresa that felt far more like a prison. One in which she would spend many days months and years hating. Teresa swore to herself that she would leave all this behind her at the first possible occasion. She can still clearly remember the day that she left that family home and joined the Royal Air Force. It was just two months off her sixteenth birthday. Her stepfather had informed her that to remain living in his house, she had to live by his rules. This was a big decision for her to take being so young, but she could no longer live by any rules that he imposed. Never really understanding at that time, what she was really running from. Memories of those years living by his rules were buried so deep, that previous years and events were only a burr to her. Teresa’s Time spent while in the Royal Air Force was very rewarding, and she involved herself in all and everything possible. After meeting her ex -husband whilst she was on leave, she then left this all behind her and married. It was greatly missed and in retrospect, it would be something that she would live to regret many years later. Life as a married woman changed many things for her; the biggest of all would be the arrival of her son. Teresa loved him even before he was born, and he is still able to pull on her heart strings daily.
Sadly after many years, she found herself unable to stay within that marriage. The onset of a set of circumstances beyond her control would stamp its seal, rendering the marriage unworkable. Engineered by the involvement of the one man Teresa had learnt to hate - her stepfather. The marriage was dissolved and there was no going back on her part, that door was firmly closed behind her. Some years later she would find herself in a long term lesbian relationship, firmly believing that anything touched by a man was tainted; bringing with it only pain and heartache. Teresa’s thoughts at that time were that the worst was surly now behind her, but her life was set to make another turn from her envisaged path. It was to arrive in the form of an accident, which once again would alter her life forever. After many months and many doctors reports she was ill health retired, unable to return to work in either one of her two loved occupations. Teresa was affected by this far more then she could have ever expected, she was left alone with nothing but time, and still within the mix of a completely insane situation; it was at this point that Teresa would enter into the mental health care system fully, to have any hope of dealing with everything going on around her. That care umbrella is still part of her everyday life. The loss of her mother through less than adequate health care, brought her pain like she had never thought possible. Teresa saw herself delving deeper and deeper into her own unconscious thoughts, revealing to her at that time memories which seemed so alien. Ultimately her mental health would prove to be a factor, in the disintegration of her then lesbian relationship.
It’s something that Teresa is still trying to come to terms with even now. She now lives alone with only a small dog for company, which in truth she is happy with. Firmly believing that she can’t hurt those she loves, if they are not there for her to do so; to her mind segregation is the answer. Teresa is still unable to work and in constant pain daily. Maybe today you could say that she has once more taken back control of her life, but only outwardly. The truth is she still carries the past along with her, like an uninvited guest at a party. The one that never seems to know when the party is over and it’s time to leave. Teresa is now trying to live her life as fully as possible, through her son and grandson; they have become her light at the end of the tunnel.