As a mother you want to do everything in your power to protect your children. You don't want them to get hurt, be sad, or get scared.
Yesterday afternoon while we were playing "park" a game Cole invented and we play pretty much every single day, sometimes two or three times a day. It's super simple, and one of the biggest reasons we haven't coughed up a bunch of cash to purchase some new couches that we so desperately
We were all having fun, then out of the blue Cole pops up on the couch and starts talking about a man and night-night. My heart sank a bit, as I encouraged him to tell me about this man. He said he sees him when he closes his eyes, and he opened and came out of his closet and "he dary mama". He said he got big, big, bigger and put on big shoes. There was something about a spot on his door, that the man left through to go downstairs. His story went on for at least a half hour. Listening to my little boy's voice tell me in little boy fashion about this "dary man" that comes out of his closet pretty much haunted my own heart.
His nap time he was nervous and fidgety. He went down fine but then started screaming about 45 minutes into his nap, I went up to be with him and let him know I was there with him, that Jesus was there with him, and if he felt scared all he needed to do was say, "Jesus, I need you". There is something completely innocent and sweet in hearing the words "Desus, I need do" coming from a nearly 3 year old's mouth. He asked me to remove all of his sock monkey's and stuffed dog from his room, and then he went down and slept for maybe 45 minutes (nothing compared to his usual 2 hour nap that he needs).
So suddenly I find myself trying to figure out how to explain to my little boy that this man isn't real. That he was dreaming him, that God is bigger and more powerful than this man? Then my mind wanders to the spot of questioning is this my fault? Did he see something scary on one of his shows that he watches? Is it something he saw while we were out and about, was there something I could have done more to shield him from this scary man?
I try my hardest to monitor everything that gets put into my little boy's brain. I am reminded of the old school "Mcgee and Me" (anyone?) episode of when Nick really wants to go see a scary movie, and his parents tell him "no" and explained that his brain and heart are precious, he needed to protect what he puts in them, because once it's in, there is no taking it back.... no erasing it. The whole garbage in, garbage out idea.
While he isn't old enough yet to know what to shield his mind from, I am. I have tried to protect his little mind, and I can't help but feel as if I should have done more.
I'm not really sure what to do next, as this stage of being scared at night is all new to us. We have decided not to bring up the man unless he does, to continue to pray with him nightly, to try and teach him more about the mighty God we have, and to reassure him that we will do everything in our humanly power to protect him.
This is the part of parenting I don't like, to watch my child wrestle with something so hard to understand. I wish there was any easy fix.
Any other parent's out there who have gone through something similar, I would love to hear your advice on how you helped your little one get through this. Thank you!