I feel a tug at my side. Groggily, I open my eyes and in focuses my 5 year old son standing by my bed.
"Patrick..? What are you….it’s 2:30 in the morning…" I whisper, tiredly squinting at my alarm clock.
"Can I sleep with you tonight dad?" he says, holding back tears.
I pat the area on the bed behind me to tell him to come up, as I make room for him, inching away from my wife, he crawls in between us and drowns himself in covers.
This has been the 4th night in a row.
The next day, I’m making grilled cheese for lunch as my wife walks into the kitchen.
"I think we need to do something about Patrick’s nightmares" she says concerned.
I don’t take my eyes off the lunch in front of me.
"…Nothing really to talk about, I always went to my parent’s room when I got scared as a kid."
Silence overcomes the kitchen, save the quiet grasp of heat on the sandwiches below me. She had a point, I remember going to my parent’s room in seek of comfort every now and then but to do it 4 nights in a row? Seemed a little bit overkill.
"I don’t know," says my wife, flipping her hand in the air and breaking the silence, "maybe we should send him to a therapist or something"
"A therapist? Rachel he’s 5 years old. This is probably just a little phase, I’m sure he’ll get over it."
"Alright…" she sighs reluctantly.
I finish my sandwich and serve it onto a plate. While part of me agrees with what I just said, the other part is screaming that something is wrong.
9:00 o’clock PM. Patrick went to bed an hour ago, and the wife has gone out with a friend. The house’s creaks are the only thing to hear as I walk up the stairs, giving in to the fact that I have to work tomorrow.
As I pass Patrick’s room something catches my ear. Quiet sulking.
I open the door and I see my son sitting up with blankets up to his shoulders crying on the corner of his bed. He jolts his head to me when the door opens, and then lets out a louder cry, reaching for my safety.
I run towards him.
"Hey, hey, what’s wrong?" I soothe.
Behind tears, he points to his closet and utters “I hear noises in my closet…”
I turn around and see his half opened closet across his room. Poor guy, I remember when I was scared of my closet.
Walking over to the closet and closing it completely, I try to reassure him.
"Patrick, I know sometimes it may seem like the house makes scary noises, but you have to remember it’s all natural. You can’t let your imagination control you. Every time you think you hear a strange sound that you’re not sure about, just remind yourself that it’s just the house settling, alright?
He reluctantly nods his head, despite it being obvious he doesn’t think that will solve any problems. I kneel down beside his bed and gently touch his arm.
"Now, I’m going to go to bed. If you get scared at all, just come into my room. But I want you to try and be brave, if a noise scares you, just ignore it and try to think of happy things."
He slowly nods again and stares in silence as I walk out of the room. There was something about his stare though that made me uneasy. Something that made me feel like I was abandoning him. Like he was trying to get as much time looking at me, an object of safety, before he was left alone in his room. I felt bad, but in the end thought it would be good for him if he overcame his fear.
He didn’t. What was probably only an hour later, as I’m about to drift off into a deep slumber he comes running in the room, crying intensely. I pick him up from the floor and nestle him between me and a stack of pillows.
"What happened?" I asked.
He sat there, still crying, trying to get the words out.
"I…I…I…I saw a face…"
My heart sank. Please tell me this was just his imagination exaggerating something like a coat peaking out into his view.
Eventually his crying stopped and he began to close his eyes. When I was sure he was sleeping, I softly moved out of bed. The fatherly instinct in me told me I should check out the closet, even if it was just his imagination.
I closed the door to my room behind me and turned on the hall lights. My hands grasped the doorknob of my son’s room and I lightly turned it to ensure he did not wake up suddenly without a father beside him. The door opened slowly, and as I tip toed in I could see my son’s room unveiling.
It was perfectly fine. I turned and looked into the closet, and just like I had thought, an arm of a white dress shirt was peaking out from the depths into my son’s room. In the darkness he most likely saw it as a pale face and became scared. I shut the closet door and calmly walked back to my room, stopping halfway when a thought occurred…didn’t I already close the closet door?
Nope, that was just a post by a different user on tumblr. I’m not entirely sure where the post originated, but if anyone else knows maybe they can give me the source.
You’re very welcome ;)
I just completely zoned out this week getting ready for Christmas, and forgot all about updating. But you can expect some creepy posts on Monday, and I’ll try to be a bit more mindful of updating in the future. I love this tumblr, and I’d hate to let it fall to the wayside just because I get busy irl.
And thanks to my followers for sticking around even though I’m completely scatterbrained