Last night I had a remarkably disturbing dream that woke me up with a severe case of “the willies.” Try as I might to roll over and go back to sleep, I just couldn’t shake the feeling that something was right behind me with evil intentions. So, I called Dave at work to cry and recount the horror that was my dream and ask him to somehow cure “the creeps.” Without sounding the least bit bothered, he talked me through the dream, then led my sleepy mind to a happier place where The Sandman was waiting.

The first thing I thought when I awoke this morning, after “Thank God I’m still alive,” was “Gosh, my husband is great,” and then, “I am such a scaredy cat.”

Seriously, I am. I have two especially convincing pieces of evidence to prove this statement.

  1. After begging my mother to let me watch The Afternoon Movie one Saturday, from the age of 4 to 6, I refused to use the bathroom with the door closed or place any part of my body under the running water from a faucet for fear that The Blob was going to get me.
  2. I spent the majority of my high school years living in fear of being possessed. I had used a Oujia Board with my friends, against my mother’s wishes, and felt certain that I’d opened the door to my soul and pretty much gave demons, or even Satan himself, an open invitation to take me over. I slept with a night light and with the radio on. (Although, I had the radio on just in case The Rapture happened and I was left behind – I would want to know right away.)

Sure, everyone has fears when they’re 4 or 5 or even a teenager, but then you grow up and realize monsters and demon possession are nothing to fear, right? Well…although I may not fear the exact same things I did then, I am still a scaredy cat.

I dread the day Julia comes running into my bedroom, frightened and shouting, “Mommy, there’s a monster in my room!”

How will I ever mask my fear? I’ll have to fight my natural reaction to panic and scream, “ARE YOU SERIOUS!?!? What did it look like? I’m sure glad it didn’t follow you in here. Oh my goodness, you better sleep with me. We’ll protect each other. And we’ll keep the lights on, okay?”

In truth, I know that when Julia has those fears of ghosts and monsters, I’ll overcome my own fears and be able to help her deal with it. That’s the amazing thing about parenting – it isn’t just about helping your child to grow, it is a growing experience itself. Again and again, I am able to become what my daughter needs, probably because I’ve never had such selfless motivation. So when she needs me to be strong and unafraid, deep down I know I will be able to do it.

Until then, I’ll continue to avert my eyes from mirrors I walk by in the dark so as not to call on Bloody Mary, just to be safe.

*Submitted to Scribbit’s Write-Away Contest


Comments

11 Cool Kids Commented

  1. Daddy Forever on January 11, 2007 12:12 am

    When the time comes, you’ll be strong for your daughter. My wife is the same way. She’s a real scaredy cat too, but she no problems going out into the dark hallway if one the kid is crying for her.

  2. Ruth on January 11, 2007 9:40 am

    I have overcome so many fears, now that I have kids. It is amazing how every fear I have had just seems to disappear when one of my kids needs a reassuring hug…It is like a built in function or something!! Although, I hate having bad dreams, escpecially when I wake up and feel like it really happened…

  3. Karly on January 11, 2007 10:39 am

    I’m a big scaredy cat, too. I used to love scary movies and would never get scared, and now if a commercial for one comes on I have to change the channel as fast as I possibly can. My husband works nights too and when you get scared and your all alone…its awful.

  4. kelley on January 11, 2007 12:14 pm

    I haven’t grown out of my irrational fears, either. It drives my husband nuts sometimes, because he absolutely can’t relate to it. He’ll watch horror movies in an empty house and not think twice about it afterwards. I refuse to watch anything even mildly scary unless my husband is with me to “protect” me afterwards! (And then I’ll still be afraid every night for the following week or so!)

    Nick is dying to do some sort of ghost vacation, where we stay at supposedly “haunted” hotels. (He got the idea from a travel show that aired before Halloween.) There is no way in hell…

  5. Joshua Xalpharis on January 11, 2007 12:21 pm

    I guess that rules out watching “The Blair Witch Project” on a camping trip…

  6. Faith on January 11, 2007 3:31 pm

    I’m a huge scaredy cat because I have an extremely fertile imagination when it comes to this stuff. And at the same time I’m completely drawn to horror movies, haunted places, scary books, etc.

    I just regret it at night sometimes after I’ve turned off the lights and am lying there in the dark lol

    Even now at night when I have to go outside of our fenced in yard to go to my car, I’ll walk all brave and slowly out there with my big ass mag-lite then I’ll refuse to walk around to the drivers side. If I have to get to that side of the car I’ll climb into the passengers seat and stretch over – while of course shutting the passengers side door that way nothing can sneak up behind me.

    I have lots of stories like that, all embarrassing – none rational. I think I’ll stop now.

  7. Mommy the Maid on January 11, 2007 8:21 pm

    I am the world’s biggest scardey cat. I leave lights on to sleep if Hubby isn’t home. And I still run out of a room really fast after I turn the light off.

    You have an amazing hubby to be so sweet and help you like that.

  8. Amy on January 14, 2007 9:31 pm

    Leslie

    I thought that I was the only one who wouldn’t look into a mirror at night, you know, just in case. I almost never watch scarey movies anymore because then I will have to get up in the middle of the night and use the bathrrom all alone, and God knows what could be waiting for me around the corner. We are so much alike it’s scarey, but not that scarey :)

    Amy

  9. Michelle on October 4, 2007 12:27 am

    I used to hate the witch from Sleeping Beauty. It was those horrible horns that did it :)

  10. patois on October 20, 2007 10:20 am

    Dark Shadows and an older, smarter sister with whom I shared a room had me in mortal fear of the dark, vampires, werewolves, etc. I’ve never shaken the fear. I’m happy I have children with me when my husband travels. I seem to be stronger in the face of their fears.

  11. Daisy on October 20, 2007 6:18 pm

    You’ll save her — or she’ll spend the night with you and you’ll be just fine with it. All will be well. Monsters begone.

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