Monsters in the Night

As I sat rocking my daughter in her nursery, I found myself taking in the shadows playing on the walls in the blue of her nightlight. Her crib rails were giant pillars leaping toward the ceiling. Caught in the fray was a tiny bear that had grown to the size of a beast capable of scaling the Empire State Building. Even a pretty basket, normally pink and frilly, was joining the game. It took the form of a large spaceship circling the pillars and chasing the beast in search of his prey. All of the shadows brought back memories of the fears I had of monsters as a child. Nighttime brought out so many worries of potential threats. I’d line my bed with all of my stuffed animals in the hopes they would be able to fend of any villains. Then I’d offer several “if I die before I wake” requests up to my greater being. Eventually, I would lose the energy to continue the battle against the dark and I’d drift to sleep.

Now that I’m an adult, I’m no longer afraid of shadows in the night. I’m wise enough to know they are the result of harmless objects being seen in a different light. My new nighttime monsters aren’t on the walls. They are the traces of my daily fears and worries hiding in my brain. Just like the frilly basket and tiny bear, once the lights go off any problems I’m struggling with are also blown out of proportion. Trouble is, with these new monsters, lining my bed with stuffed animals does nothing to soothe my concern and help me sleep. The only way I’ve found to tame these beasts is to make sure I put them away as best as possible during the day. Leaving them out to be exposed in the different light of night affords me no peace. Sure, there are some challenges that can’t be resolved immediately. Identifying solutions and setting them in motion provides more significant armor against the monsters than ignoring the problems and hoping they will go away.

One Response to “Monsters in the Night”

  1. reeveslady says:

    You mean the ostrich approach doesn’t work? Seriously, though, I completely agree with you. I’ve found that if I let problems go, the longer I wait to rectify them the more time I have to worry about the outcome. The more I worry, the worse my worries become until everything is blown out of proportion in my own mind. Then I finally confront the problem, and I find that I was worrying about nothing.