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franklin county times

It's not always a good night

By Staff
Melissa Cason, Franklin County Times
Two nights last week my seven-year-old woke up with a bad dream. It's been quite a while since he's had a bad dream so it surprised me that he was having one, and it brought back memories for me.
When I was child, I had awful nightmares. I am not talking about a few bad dreams. I had full-blown nightmares almost every time I closed my eyes. I can remember waking up screaming in fear. It would take hours for me to get back to sleep, if ever.
I know my mom and dad spent countless nights walking the floors with me and trying to reassure me that nothing was going to get me and that I was completely safe.
They took me to the doctor, but no one could really explain why I had such nightmares on a regular basis. I could not watch a scary movie, and Halloween kind of freaked me out until I became a teenager.
I was the only person in the dorm at college with a nightlight. My roommates did not think it was too odd because I told them I had the nightlight so I would not trip on anything if I got up during the night. But, the truth was, I was afraid to be alone in the dark – I still am.
Now, as an adult, I know I am safe. I know no monsters are under my bed and I know that nothing is going to get me.
Knowing all of this does not stop me from sleeping with the door open and the hall light on and triple-checking all my locks before I go to bed when Jimmy is away.
When Jimmy is at home, I feel safe and I am not afraid of the dark at all.
I don't watch scary movies at night. I love to watch them, but only if I can see them in the middle of the day when I have a good nine or 10 hours to forget the scary parts.
Knowing how intense nightmares can be, I am quick to comfort Jordan.
Jimmy claims that I am babying him too much, but I know how bad nightmares can be. I know what it is like to be afraid to fall asleep because of what I might dream.
Luckily for both Jordan and me, I am able to calm him very quickly, and within in a few minutes he's drifting back to sleep. As a parent, I am glad that his bad dreams are not as intense and horrible as mine were.