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Chihuahua Shadow Man


Let me start by explaining why I have doubts about my shadow man experience being related to a dream and sleep paralysis. I do have a history of sleep paralysis with what I've tended to call "waking dreams." I knew exactly where I was and I had sensory awareness of my surroundings, but all of my joints were locked, including my jaw. I could neither move nor scream. I've never felt as though someone was holding me down, as I've seen many people report here; it's more all-encompassing than that. Nightmares typically corresponded with the events back then. In addition to sensing my surroundings, I could also sense horrific creatures approaching and I needed to get away from them, but I was trapped. While highly unsettling, I knew they were dreams. I knew what I was experiencing was all "in my head." I tended to focus my energies on screaming my way out.

My "waking dreams" were most common during my college years when I was under a high degree of stress and experiencing very little sleep. I attended a local university, commuted from home and worked as many hours as I could at a local mall. I would often try to steal a quick nap on the couch between classes and work, and I would worry about waking up in time to make it to my job. Hence... The stress induced waking dreams.

I explain about those events to separate them from my shadow man experience. This was quite different: first, because I had never previously "dreamt up" a shadow man, nor had I ever heard of such a thing at the time; and second, because I was neither under stress nor suffering from lack of sleep.

In November of 2007, I was in the city of Chihuahua in the state of Chihuahua, Mexico, for business. I travel often in my job, and have done so since around 1990. I'm accustomed to what others might consider the "stress" of frequently staying in strange hotels in strange cities. I actually enjoyed this particular trip. I was very comfortable in Chihuahua. The area where we stayed reminded me of many US suburbs. We even went to the local mall and walked around some. And yet, one night while on that trip, I had a visit from a Shadow Man.

I can't say what woke me (or presumably "woke" me), but I opened my eyes to find a figure/person/shadow man standing at the foot of my bed, on my left. He was looking down at me; I was sure of that, although I could not see any eyes. I saw no face, either. I saw, simply, a shadow, the size of a man, perhaps about 6 feet tall. He had no features, but he was very definitely man-shaped, neither fat nor thin, and somewhat solid. He was not transparent. I could not see through him.

While I fully admit that some nights I can wake up and be uncertain about where I am, on that night I knew exactly where I was: in a hotel in Chihuahua. And I knew I had an intruder in my room. And I was, as you would expect, terrified. But I was also trapped. My joints, including my jaw, were all absolutely locked, as they had been during the college-days incidents. I struggled to shout at him - not simply to scream, as years before, but to tell him to get out. Despite my jaw not working, I repeated over and over again, "Get out of my room!"

Try shouting that with your teeth clamped. That's the sound that resulted.

I can't say how long he stood there, absolutely still. But suddenly I saw him bending forward, and then falling forward, aiming to land right smack-dab on top of me. At the instant of impact - or what should have been impact - he vanished, my jaw unlocked and I screamed for real (fortunately neither shrill enough nor long enough to elicit a call from the front desk lol). I jumped out of bed, turned on lights and checked to make sure the door was locked. It was.

I've never had another visit. I've often tried to force myself to believe this incident had just been "in my head" like all those nightmares way back when. Unfortunately, I can't help but believe it was real - which begs the next question: Why?

Last week, after reading some of the shadow man experiences here... And finding none to be like mine...I've revisited the question again, and I'm beginning to believe that the "why" of his visit has something to do with what happened in the subsequent months and years.

Four months later, in March of 2008, several years of horrific violence were ushered into Mexico when the government initiated the current drug wars by launching "Joint Operation Chihuahua." Juarez, Monterrey and the city of Chihuahua itself, all locations where we traveled, became hot spots, with murder and kidnap rates soaring. I can't substantiate this next bit, but I was informed by colleagues local to the area that the hotel in which we stayed was "invaded" one night when a group of men loyal to one drug lord went looking for the girlfriend of another drug lord. They searched room-by-room until they found her. Then they took her away, and no one ever saw her again.

2008 also marks: the start of the recession; the fall of the auto industry (which is my bread-and-butter); the first series of layoffs my company has ever dealt out throughout its long history; and, on a personal level, a family crisis involving my parents' failing health. In the years since, I, myself, have remained fine. I kept my job and my health, but I've suffered "survivor guilt" to watch long-time friends and colleagues walked out the door at work. I've also experienced an insane amount of family crises - including a niece and a nephew - cousins, not siblings - who were involved in separate, head-on collision accidents. Both survived. With my niece, the impact had been off-center just enough to destroy the front passenger seat - where no one was sitting - and therefore did not crush her. With my nephew, I honestly don't know what saved him, except perhaps the grace of God. He'd been on a motorcycle. He does carry "souvenirs" in the form of all the pins now holding one arm and one leg together.

Other bad things happened as well; it would take too long to list every one. It all seemed to culminate last year when, in the span of 13 months, from August of 2011 to August of 2012, four people very close to me all passed away, all very suddenly - from illnesses, not accidents. This August, 2013, was marked only with a wedding (which I like to count as a good sign - sort of "starting fresh").

Now I can't help but wonder several things: Did that shadow man pay me a visit to warn me of all the horrific events soon to come? Did his falling into me signify shielding me, personally, from any direct harm (even if he couldn't shield me from the stress - emotional, physical and financial)? Or did he somehow make me a "magnet" to draw bad energies that extended to people around me?

Or did he make me a "shadow"? I say that because, in the years since his "visit," I realize I've become somewhat of a shadow at work. Where I used to be viewed as a "thought leader," I've been pushed aside without being cast aside. I'm like the "wild card" they pull out when they have problems they can't solve, but I'm not in the thick of things anymore, not like I had been when I visited Chihuahua.

Is he linked to Chihuahua itself, but something about me drew him to me? If something drew him, what was it? Was it the room, itself - maybe because that's where the drug lord's girlfriend would soon face a terror of her own? Or was it me, possibly linked to whatever has protected me in the past? (I had 3 extreme experiences between the ages of 13 & 19, any one of which could have killed me or resulted in significant physical trauma.) Was it the "fact" (if you can call it a fact) that I had been "accepted" by the spirits in my childhood home after having been conceived there (described in my first story here, "Was My House a Portal")?

It's all guesswork, certainly, but very intriguing to ponder.

(End note: I write to process experiences. This experience was no different. I ended up writing a poem that captured the essence of a shadow man's visit. In fact, I started to write a lot of horror-themed poems and stories starting around that time frame. I forced myself to stop a little over a year ago, because I felt I was inviting too much darkness into my life. That first poem is available to read here:

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The following comments are submitted by users of this site and are not official positions by Please read our guidelines and the previous posts before posting. The author, B4Freya, has the following expectation about your feedback: I will read the comments and participate in the discussion.

B4Freya (4 stories) (26 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-24)
Orpheus: Thank you for the advice. I don't have prayer beads, but it might be a good idea to invest in some. I did hang a crucifix recently, placed where I can't help but see it while in bed. I'll look for your story.

SirenBelva: Thank you, too. I'll have to look for your story, as well. As to being a shadow at work... Just today I had an article accepted by a professional journal. If my current employer wants to keep me as a shadow, maybe some acceptance by other professionals in my field will get my company to take another look... Submitting the article was, I suppose, my way of taking some power back.

Lilady4/Rachel: It is a lot. Too much. Without the writing outlet, I just don't know how I would have gotten to this point. I wish I could burn incense, but my husband is extra-sensitive to smells. There's no way he could handle it. As to candles...I've never bought black ones, and never would. I'll remember that, though about white ones. It's odd, in a way. Now with Halloween coming up I have no desire to get creepy decorations whatsoever. For the first time ever, all I really want to have on display are smiling scarecrows and the like.
Lilady4 (7 stories) (427 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-22)
Wow, that is a lot of pain and suffering for one person to handle. You have done very well 😁. I think that this Shadow man could have been very real. I also think that you need to protect yourself from Evil. In some circumstances, Evil Spirits/Beings will prey on your negative thoughts and feelings. Light candles (not black, never ever use black candles) and light incense (My Husband and I have used Dragon's Blood and White Sage together). Also, try and meditate for your own good.
Love & Light, Rachel ❤
SirenBelva (7 stories) (64 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-21)
Just reread my previous comment B4Freya and I wanted to say that I am not trying to dismiss/devalue your experiences in any way in case it came across that way. The "take your power back" advice is something that a very cherished mentor told me and it has been very helpful and comforting to me when I face my own challenging situations.
SirenBelva (7 stories) (64 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-21)
B4Freya, I want to start off by saying that I am so sorry for the hardships and loss that you have endured. As far as the shadow man, I believe you and I have myself experienced something similar. It is one of my stories published on this site. Whether the figure was real or a figment of your imagination, we will never know for sure. After reading your story and your method of processing by writing, I think that writing about what happened is a good thing. Free writing can be a good thing too. However, I think that you need to reclaim your power back from these experiences. You don't have to be a shadow at work anymore, and you don't have to be stuck there waiting for the other shoe to drop. Bad things happen to us all and unfortunately we have little control over outside forces--but we can control ourselves and our own minds. It is possible that the shadow man was there to warn you of impending negative events, but not necessarily. Take your power back and become a stronger person as a result of what you have endured. Rooting for you and good luck! 😁
Orpeus (2 stories) (12 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-19)
I have a strategy that has worked for me or many years, I like to think of it as the wall, by blocking out any desire to see or hear what is in the room, you push it/them out of your sense. I'm waiting for my story to be published, but I have a similar thing that happens to me, but I don't get sleep paralysis. It is advised to place a set of pray beads on the bed whiles you sleep. And if possible, place a bible on the bed side table - the energies from these two items alone will make it easier to blot it all out. I would say that if you wake up again with this, focus with all your heart and mind on removing the feelings from your mind. I still feel the presence of shadows around me at times. But it is a lot less potent now
B4Freya (4 stories) (26 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-18)
Swinsinfire: Thank you so much for holding me to the Light! It matters, I know it does!

I definitely went down a bad path in my head. Very negative thoughts, feelings, vibes, etc. I shifted from writing inspirational poetry to horror poetry (although I still wrote the occasional inspirational one, too). I also started writing horror and erotic fiction. About 2 years ago, I forced myself to stop writing all of it. I focused all of my energies on writing dramatic stories filled with messages of faith and family and brotherhood -- people faced with tragic challenges but using faith and love to find their way out again. I honestly think that somewhat cliche outlet transformed me.

As to lucid dreams... I have 5 that, to me, represent important messages that can take me years to decipher and revisit and re-decipher. Here's a direct copy/paste from my LJ, dated May 1, 2008, describing one particularly troubling dream in present tense:

[start paste] I feel the bottom of the bed, at my feet, lifting up. After a few moments I'm convinced it's ghost or demon related. I try screaming, and then I force myself to wake up -- or so I think. I try to turn on the bedside lamp, but it won't go on. I get up -- or so I think -- and try the wall switch, but it's dead too. So I try rushing down the stairs. Interestingly, my feet never touch the floor -- my first real clue that I'm really still asleep in bed. Second clue: the way the lights on the stairs sort of seem to fluctuate in and out of "phase". Okay, we don't have "lights on the stairs". Then there's some sort of "stuff" like volcanic ash floating down in front of me, between me and the great room. Finally, I wake up, in bed, in the bedroom, upstairs. [end paste]

I really did believe there were certain demonic -- somethings -- floating in the periphery of my life at the time, as though they were waiting at the edge, waiting for me to completely give up, and give in... And let them in. Fortunately, I never did. I found my writing outlet. I hung up crucifixes. And I prayed.
Swimsinfire (11 stories) (556 posts)
11 years ago (2013-10-18)
That is a lot of a lot. So sorry about your losses. And you seem to be handling them so well. I've heared a lot about shadow men on this site with differing opinions about whether they are possitive or negative. But just in case, it might be good to mentally surround yourself in The light, or get a blessing if you have a Catholic tradition. It really does help. Did you write down any of your lucid dreams? Sometimes we get those for a reason. I'm really holding you to the Light, hope all is well.

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