Humans are programmed to fear the dark, afterall a sabre tooth tiger could jump out and drag us away in to the dark. That’s what we’re told but I think there could be another reason.
There’s one nocturnal sound that never fails to make me freeze in fear. It cuts through the night like the cry of a demon, chilling the soul of anyone close enough to hear, except my husband who it turns out cannot hear between the hours of 7pm and 7am.
‘TUCK ME IN’
Like her father, my daughter seems to physically alter between 7pm and 7am leaving her unable, in any circumstance, to pull her duvet up. The fear of hearing that cry forces me to tip toe round at night, checking the shadows for lurking toddlers.
Sometimes I think I’d take my chances with the sabre tooth tiger.
Monsters under the bed don’t scare me anymore either. Mainly because I don’t really have a bed. My husband has a nice big bed. I have a blanket on the floor of our offspring’s bedroom. The dogs have a nicer set up than I do.
The risk of monsters is less scary when a real life Alien facehugger, in the form of your son, has decided he cannot sleep anywhere but clinging on to your chest with his sweaty face pressed against yours. He wakes up wailing, I assume in fear of the tigers, and begins the now ritualistic clawing on to my chest, sticking his talons in and smashing his face in to mine in an attempt to get comfy, and break my nose. He drifts off and finally I can sleep.
‘Mummy… just tuck me in’
I’m a bit stuck right now and can’t really move, can you pull the cover up yourself?
‘No, just tuck me in please’
Ffs. I shuffle, trying not to disturb the sleeping paracite clinging to my face, over to her bed. On inspection the cover is up to her chin. Her chin. It’s okay though because finally I can sleep.
‘Just make me fish fingers and chips and banana cake please’
TWO HOURS of screaming later and it’s okay because I can finally sleep. Except when the sigh of relief wakes up the Spider Monkey still on my chest.
**repeat for the next eighteen years**