Sunday, May 31, 2009

Now I Lay Me Down to Sleep

Tonight I lay down next to Mim and asked her to tell me what she's going to dream about. This was something we started doing a while back because it helps her focus on sleeping, and helps her get some good images in her head as she heads off into that nebulous realm.

Well, that was the idea anyway...It hasn't worked out quite that way. It turns out that my children are actually a bit blood-thirsty, so when she talks about what she'll dream that night, it usually involves animals eating each other or butterflies impaling their victims...all sorts of strange things.

Yet her actual dreams are much more familiar to me than the other-wordly fairy tales of her waking mind, and more frightening. She said that last night she dreamed she had to drive the car all the way to Grandma Lilibeth's house, and she was afraid, but then she woke up and realized it was all a dream. That is exactly the kind of dream I had constantly as a child.

I would dream that my little sister and brother, Claye and Elijah, were in a vehicle, and I had to drive them somewhere to safety, but I didn't know how to drive. It would be a desperate attempt and often ended badly. Once I really did learn to drive, of course, I no longer had those dreams, but since I didn't get a license until I was 18, they lasted for a while. I would also dream that I had to get them out of a burning house, or find my parents, or protect my family from various disasters...always there was something I had to accomplish for which I was ill-equipped. I always supposed that those dreams were the curse of the typical first-born, but maybe not, because Mim is the youngest of two, not the oldest of three, as I was.

She also prayed tonight that Jesus would not let Mommy die, and apparently that was her request at Sunday School this morning too. (I probably ought to make some phone calls so people know there's nothing we've been keeping secret from the church family.)

I wish I knew how to ease her mind, because a three-year old shouldn't have these concerns, but I can only tell her to do what I have to do, over and over and over. Lay it all in the hands of God and try your hardest not to take it out again.


Lilibeth said...

Your fears seem like a carry over from my blog entry today. No wonder firstborn daughters are so serious.

Carina said...

Well, that's what I always assumed, but maybe it's just personality instead of birth order...

Johanna said...

my youngest two are a bit blood-thirsty too. I thought it was just a boy thing. Maybe it's their way of building up their courage. If i can think of the most disgusting disturbing thing and not flinch, then I'll be ready for whatever life throws at me.
Sean insists on going down into the basement every time i do. To protect me from the spiders. He gets quite upset if he discovers I've been down there alone.
He's concerned about being sucked up into a black hole. He makes up all these different planets where we could live that are black hole proof. lol.

aftergrace said...

Hmmm, you've got me thinking...
maybe birth order-at least with you feeling the need to protect your siblings.

I think though the anxiety over something happening to us parents is very real for our kids. I think they sense our perplexion with the world today and it's many uncertainties?

I know I'm ready to blow a gasket just thinking about how crazy our world has become!

Qtpies7 said...

Mim is the first born girl. Kaytlin acts like a firstborn, too, but is the second. She is the perfectionistic, honor roll, everything has to work out type of person, always the boss of everyone, organizing things. LOL
If she were a boy, she would act like a second child, lol.

Chandelle said...

You couldn't give better advice. I am often amazed at everything that goes through a child's mind that would hardly be shared if we didn't choose to ask or delve deeper. We've had many conversations with Sam about who takes care of him if Mommy and Daddy both die. We don't just bring it up, he was real concerned after my week in Colorado with my mom last month. He was so relieved when I returned home.

...miss you friend. Will we ever have an opportunity for a play date again?