No hands and no feet

I lost the sensation of my hands and feet as I approached sleep.

This morning, I woke up at 6 AM while everyone else in my family was still asleep. I tried to remember if I had seen anything in my dreams but was almost sure I hadn’t.

But as I lay in my bed, feeling somewhere in between wakefulness and sleep, I started to remember my dream. This has happened to me before – being absolutely sure that I just don't remember my dream this time and then suddenly the dream comes back.

I contemplated whether to let myself fall asleep again or fetch my phone from the bedside and write down my dream. I was tired but didn't want to loose the valuable data from the dream world.

I usually type my dream content using keywords and short sentences. I'm trying to put down all the important points, especially emotions, but I don't want to spend too much time on it. Keywords are enough the remember the dream even several months later.

It took maybe a minute to write down my dream. Then, I continued to lie in my bed. As everyone else was still sleeping but would wake up soon, probably in 30 minutes or so, I thought now was a good time to experiment with the borderline of sleep.

My plan was to imagine some scenes. I started by imagining my downstairs living room, as if I were a floating camera moving around and looking at different things – the TV, some objects on my kitchen table, the couch. Then I got bored and moved to another scene.

This is basically what I did in my mind. I was a "floating camera" flying around in my living room, looking at objects on my TV cabinet. Well, the image was not as colorful and clear as in this video I later recorded with my iPhone, but you get the point.

The scenes started to feel quite real, but very briefly. Not as real as my waking reality, but more vivid than my usual imagination.

After a few minutes, I began to lose the sensation of my body. It was gradual. First, I couldn't feel my feet. Then, my hands.

But it wasn’t scary at all. I was just experimenting and knew that I could bring myself back to full wakefulness whenever I wanted to. When I moved my hands a bit, I felt them immediately, but after a few seconds, I lost the sensation of them again.

One interesting observation I had was that as I lost the sensation of my hands, I also lost the mental model of them – for example, when I moved my hands, I found them in a different position than where I thought them to be. Their position was rather abstract.

As the sensory input began to disappear from my nerves, my brain couldn't put together a coherent mental model of my body. I guess it’s only a small step from there to lose the entire sensory input while maintaining awareness and becoming lucid.

Until the next time!

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