Prompt from Madison Woods. Go check out her site to how others responded to this prompt.
The nightmares come at night. She wakes sweating and shaky. Silently, she rises from her bed.
Outside and across the yard she goes. When she arrives, she throws her arms around the dog and drops to the ground. Cuddling closer, she can smell the outdoors in the shaggy fur but she doesn’t mind. She snuggles deeper and drifts asleep into dreams that are safe, into dreams where she is protected.
The dog, used to watching over the little girl, keeps one eye open, and settles in for a long night.
Disappointing (not in every way, but sometimes)
I’ve been having nightmares. And I’m not even sure I can call them nightmares. They happen at night, but I’m never asleep. Dang me and my highly developed imagination!
I don’t normally curse my imagination. After all, my imagination allows me to escape any mundane, irritating, or painful situation I’m in. It let’s me explore new worlds and meet new people. I feel very lucky to read a book and become completely immersed in the story being told.
But, there’s always a but, sometimes my imagination is more of a curse. Like at night. Especially when my fiance is out of town (thankfully he’s back now). I recently read (and reviewed) Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children. I mentioned I found it scary. And it was. But, even worse, it’s still scaring me! The monster in the book has carved it’s way into my psyche.
I see the monster whenever I get up at night. And I have a 9 month old daughter who most assuredly does not sleep through the night. That means I get up anywhere from one to four times a night to take of her. And I am certain, every time, that the dang monster is in my home. It’s on the stairs, or it’s in the room across the hall, or I hear a creak and I know it’s about to come in to the nursery and tear us apart.
I’ve started turning lights on when I get up to nurse my daughter. It helps. Then on the return trip I have to turn the lights off and make my way back to the bed. I always look at my dog (he’s also a chicken) right before turning off the lights. If he is sleeping (which he always is) then I know no monsters have sneaked in while I was with my daughter. Then I quickly walk (I do not run, what if I trip? then I’m a sitting duck for the monster) to the bedroom and jump in to bed.
Once my body is completely under the covers I can breathe a little sigh of relief because, as everyone knows, monsters can’t get you when you’re under the covers. Then I cuddle up a little closer to my fiance and feel my heartbeat slow, always certain I’ll never fall asleep before Daughter wakes up again. Then I sink deeper in the mattress and let the comforting darkness of sleep keep me safe from all the monsters.