Hiding in the Night

How do you like to sleep at night? Do you like it completely dark or a bit of light on somewhere? Do you like to fall asleep to some sort of noise? Or do you like to sleep with ear plugs to block out any kind of noise?

I personally prefer a pitch-black room and no sound. I painted my bedroom burgundy as a teenager which had gotten me used to sleeping in the dark. I’ve always been a light sleeper. I stayed in residence at one of the colleges I attended. I liked to sleep in, which was a bit tricky with a bunch of noise in the dorm. So, I got used to wearing ear plugs to bed. Now, I’ve conditioned myself to dark and quiet.

But it hadn’t always been that way. In fact, it used to be that I couldn’t sleep in the dark and I had to have some noise to fall asleep. I particularly liked to fall asleep to the sound of my parents talking.

The dark scared me as a little child. We lived on a farm. I was afraid of the crickets and spiders that an old home seemed to invite. I would lay in bed and be afraid. So I would eventually find my way into the hallway. There was a large grate in the floor that I could see down into the kitchen. I would lay next to it, seeing the light from the kitchen illuminating the hallway upstairs. I would hear my parents chatting while doing the dishes. There was a beautiful comfort to me in that. Eventually, I would either go back to bed or fall asleep in the hallway.

But as this whole scenario carried on, and as every child likes to push the boundaries, I tried to venture a little closer to my parents.

My Mom or Dad would come and check on us periodically before they went to bed. One night, my Mom was coming up the stairs. She panicked when she felt something squishy on the step. As she pulled back her foot and tried to adjust her eyes to see what it was, she realized it was me sound asleep there.

Then she had a fright another night when they went to check on me and realized that I wasn’t in my bed. Where on earth could I have gone? Eventually, after quite the hunt, they found me sound asleep tucked under the dining room table that was next to the kitchen.

They had to find a solution. My Papa (grandfather) found a little clock. It’s face glowed at night. It had a cassette tape holder at the bottom of it with some cassette tapes included with little stories. A man would come on and read fun little stories in a quiet and soothing voice. It was called “Grandpa Time Clock”.

That fixed the problem. I was tucked away each night after that, listening to soothing sweet stories, and watching the clock light up the nooks and crannies of my room. I would fall into a peaceful sleep, tucked safely in my bed.

I just had one more issue to solve; That of the bugs. In my toddler innovative mind, I grabbed a towel and shoved it under my door so that the bugs couldn’t get in. My Mom tried to get in my room one night and struggled to get the door open. She eventually did and discovered the towel there. When she questioned me about it, I told her I was afraid of the spiders coming in. She, worrying about the hard access into my room, got smart. She said, “but if the spiders are in your room when you put the towel there, there’ll be no way for them to get out.” That immediately solved that problem as well. I no longer had the towel there and the bugs were free to come and go as they wished.

It’s funny what children will do to find comfort in the night. Do you have any fun stories of your wee ones to share?

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