Monday, April 15, 2013 for Monster

This picture made me laugh as I thought of my daughter who truly believed a monster lived under our basement stairs. She said her biggest fear was some scale covered, long clawed hand coming through the space between the steps and grabbing her ankles. Even after we got the stairs finished off and carpeted, her fear never left.

When I was a child I had no fear of the basement steps, I feared what dwelt under my bed. I just knew that there were thousands of disgusting snakes under there and they would wrap around my feet and ankles if I put my legs down next to the bed. Therefore, I would take a flying leap from the doorway to land on my mattress. Once upon the mattress my fears would evaporate. Once it was daylight my fears dwindled some but I was quick about getting out of bed. Once up, my fears totally went away until darkness settled upon us again.

When my daughter was very small and we lived at the other house she became suddenly terrified of the closet in her room. I can remember that she would scream and tell me about the monster in her closet with huge tears running down her cheeks. It was enough to break your heart. One night I took the broom in her room and told her I was going to chase the monster away and that they were so afraid of brooms, he would never ever return. (no, he just took up residence under the basement stairs in the new house, bwhahahaha). Anyway I made a big production out of it and it actually worked. I was so proud of myself. The basement stair one she finally outgrew. I don't remember my son having those sort of fears or maybe he was just too stubborn to tell me about it.

What causes these fears?  I know that movies certainly did not contribute to my fears about what was under my bed as I hadn't been allowed to see anything scary. I outgrew that fear, but I have always remembered having it. When my daughter had the closet monster fear, she was too little to have seen or even heard about anything scary. How did that fear manifest itself?

Ever seen the animated movie, Monsters, Inc.?  It's one of my favorites and it certainly brought back some memories. The plot of that movie shows me that fear of monsters is a very common thing among children.....I'm just glad we outgrow it.....even though the world really does have monsters that are every bit as scary as ones from our imagination.


Peruby said...

I can recall saying "There's no such thing as monsters" but like you say...we really do.

Lucy said...

There is something about the night that makes your mind go wandering. Even now, I find myself have some sleepless nights,I might not think it is a monster but sometimes I do think I hear some odd noises. Lucy from Lucy's Reality

Elizabeth Seckman said...

I was afraid of flushing the toilet...especially at night. I guess I thought the vacuum would pull me down!

forsythia said...

Guess you never met the "Sooinroo" who lived under our twin beds when I was 5 and my sister was 3. Be glad. Be very glad.

Josie Two Shoes said...

It is amazing how many of us grew up with a fear of snakes or monsters underneath the bed at night, yet felt perfectly safe sleeping atop it as long as we took care not to let any hands or feet dangle over precariously! I too wonder where that comes from. My younger sister had a deathly fear of the crawlspace storage closet that had a door in her bedroom. She swore something evil lurked there and we used to give her a hard time about it, but knowing what we now do about paranormal activity, I'm not so sure she didn't sense something we weren't able to!