Clinica Sierra Vista WIC

Humor@Home: Dealing with Nightmares:

It's Always a Dinosaur


I am used to being awakened in the night. My kids are 10 and 7. They’ve been waking me up for ten and seven years, respectively. I don’t even jump when I feel someone’s breath on my face and open my eyes to a face two inches from mine and a voice saying, “Mom.” 

Well, maybe I do jump. A little. Sometimes.

I am sure there are big kids out there who have stopped waking their parents up in the night. Who, at some point before they turned two (or even one), stopped needing comfort in the night. Yeah, those kids? Those are not my kids.

I try to remind myself--at 2:30 in the morning when I am being startled out of sleep--that THESE are my darling insomniacs, and I love them.

“Mom, I had a nightmare.”

And now my heart is racing and it’s no longer about me and how tired I am and how full my bladder is and whether someone else’s kid lets them sleep. All of a sudden, it is ON. How DARE a nightmare disturb MY child’s sleep?! I am ready for war. I am turning on lights and looking for monsters under the bed and tripping through the bedroom holding a baseball bat over my head.

“What did you dream, Sweetie?”

“Huh?” is the reply.

Apparently, that came out as, “Wha-wha-woah-dweem-wee?” because I am still only half awake, and my mouth is not receiving the signals from my brain yet. The adrenaline may be pumping. But the mouth is still in deep sleep.

When I finally manage to get the words out, I learn that the nightmare was of a dinosaur chasing my daughter.

It is ALWAYS a dinosaur chasing her. What in the world that dinosaur has against her I will never figure out. What is his problem? Why can’t he just sleep like the rest of us at night? But no, he has to barge into my daughter’s subconscious and wake her up and make her terrified. I mean, what is he trying to do anyway? Make her hate dinosaurs? Kids are supposed to love dinosaurs. I am ready to grab my bat again and give that dinosaur a piece of my mind.

“Did you watch ‘Ice Age: Dawn of the Dinosaurs’ again?” I ask, exasperated. She is not supposed to watch that movie. This poor kid is scared enough of dinosaurs without Buck telling stories about how Rudy attacked him. 

In all, Ashley has probably seen “Dawn of the Dinosaurs” like once.

She may not know it yet, but she will be 25 years old and living on her own before she gets to see “Jurassic Park.”

I eventually realize that I’m just walking aimlessly around the house with all the lights on in the middle of the night, mumbling, which isn’t helping anyone get back to sleep. So I cuddle up with my little love bug and let her fall asleep with some extra comfort and security. She falls asleep easily, and I lie awake the rest of the night wondering why I ever let her watch scary movies in the first place. 

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Tags: Food & Home, Parenting

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