I was a fear filled child. I wasn’t so much afraid of the dark, as I was of the things lurking around in it. I remember countless times where I would drag my mattress from my bed and go sleep in front of my mother’s bed. When it became inappropriate to do that I used to ask my sister if I could sleep with her.
The thing was, I would find myself suddenly filled with fear due to the scary shapes in the dark that was nothing more than my teddies on top of the cupboard. I still remember vividly a recurring nightmare I had about one particularly huge teddy, it use to climb off and look for me, chasing me around. In my dream I always ended up hiding in the top of my cupboard to avoid him.
I remain a fear filled grown up. I scare easily and still sometimes find that I avoid going to the bathroom at night…there is a manhole just in front of the bathroom door. Even though it is covered of course, I always fear looking up and seeing two bleak little children’s faces with dark sunken eyes staring back at me. I must admit I have woken up at night filled with the aftermath of a scary dream that left me reaching for my husband and asking him to hold me till I fall asleep again.
At times I get that nagging feeling that I’m being watched. Once whilst driving home with my mom, I saw a mother and child holding hands, standing in the middle of the little ground road where we had to drive. it was only for an instance but I got a tremendous fright thinking my mom would hit them. When I turned around they were gone and clearly my mom didn’t notice them at all.
My six year old daughter is also afraid at night. Knowing how she feels I never send her back to her room if she sneaks into our bed. I remove all her teddies from her bed and make sure there are no weird shapes. I know exactly how she feels so I suppose I sometimes spoil her out of sympathy to sleep with us.
I’ve read that it is completely normal for children at her age to be scared at night and that some children have a better developed imagination which can cause them to create a more imaginative world. This in turn can lead to them “creating” and imagining scary things more often. If this is true however, then why am I still scared at times? I can reason with things and know without a doubt that there is no such things as monsters, but the reality of it does not aid in soothing my fears… And I’m definitely not six anymore. Hopefully my daughter will grow out of her nightmares and hopefully I will as well 😉