Closeted Fear

In response to the Daily Post’s prompt “Closet”

When I was a kid I was afraid of my closet. The same way I was afraid to go to sleep with my door closed or the hallway light off.

In fact, when it came to sleeping, there were a lot of things I was afraid of.

I remember once in elementary school, we were having a Read-In. You know, one of those Midwest things where kids brought their sleeping bags to school and we would basically spend the entire day inside them while the teacher read us stories.

One of the stories that our teacher read to us was about a young girl whose bedroom window faced the cemetery outside. As I recall, as the girl slept, a demon or a ghost of some kind climbed in through her window. I don’t remember how the story ended exactly but I remember being terrified. So much so, that I still remember the story some 15 years later. (This also gave me a fear of cemeteries for a while)

So I was afraid of my windows. I would refuse to have my bed near the window for fear of something coming in through it to get me. I was afraid of my closet and would make sure that it was closed before I climbed into bed. I was afraid of sleeping with my door closed or with the hallway light off. It made me feel better to know that my parents were up and that they were the source of the soft noises as I feel asleep. I wanted to be able to see them going about their evenings. Knowing that with them there, I was safe.

Now, I can’t sleep with my door open. I have to have all the lights off, including the hallway or kitchen light to even entertain the idea of sleep. The closet can be open. In fact, it’s always open. I don’t even think I’ve shut it once.

I still have a slight issue with the window though. However, being on the 5th floor of my apartment building, it doesn’t seem to matter as much. But when I go back home to visit my parents, I sometimes think about unsavory possibilities that lurk outside the window of our ranch style home.

When I was a kid, I was afraid of a lot of things. Things that would seep into my dreams or prevent sleep altogether. I’d like to say that I’m no longer afraid. But I guess I’m just afraid of different things now. But maybe that’s okay.

Though my soul may set in darkness, it will rise in perfect light. I have loved the stars too fondly to be fearful of the night.

The Red Door

The hallway has no glow. No light to guide my way. The only thing that keeps my feet moving is the noise. Cracking, creaking, clawing. I force myself further down the hallway, the floorboards pressing into my feet. Then I see it. The Red Door. The door itself is bursting from its hred_door_2inges. Splintering between my pressed palms. Before I can grasp the metal knocker, it falls to liquid, slipping between my fingers and onto the floor. The cracks on the surface of the wood are impostors. The red paint chips away and falls seamlessly to my feet. The floor gives out and I lurch forward, smashing into the already breaking door. Wood pieces and liquid metal reign down upon me as I fall into an unknown room. Recovering from shock and the fiery pain within my heart, I get to my feet. I turn back towards the doorway, expecting to see into the darkened hallway from which I entered. But the door is suddenly intact. As if I had always been inside this room, never reaching towards anything outside of it. Never disturbing the peace within. I peer around the room and everything is in tatters. The floors are covered in soot. The wood chairs and tables are exploding. Filling the room with shards threatening to pierce every part of my body. The curtains billow in the breeze from the open window. The fabric tearing itself to shreds in long, loud, excruciating pieces. The walls are breathing. Slowly. In and out. Inhaling, exhaling. On each intake of breath, the furniture coincides, forging into themselves and splintering out as the walls exhale.

Just before the scratches begin to carve themselves into the breathtaking walls, I squeeze my eyes shut. Willing the room to no longer live in my mind. I squeeze them tighter. Then suddenly…open them.

I’m no longer inside the room, but in a darkened hallway. I can see it. The Red Door. And it’s bursting from its hinges.

Inspired by the Daily Post

Sweet Dreams from Angel Grove

What is the best dream you’ve ever had? Recount it for us in all its ethereal glory. If no dream stands out in your memory, recount your worst nightmare. Leave no frightening detail out.

When I was a kid, my brother and I were obsessed with The Power Rangers. Especially the original series and cast, The Mighty Morphin Power Rangers. We watched this show every Saturday morning and for more than one Halloween, we dressed up as certain Power Rangers. Once I was the Pink Ranger and he was the Green Ranger and another year I was possibly the Green Ranger while he was the Black Ranger. And so it was only natural that we were very big fans of Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995). I’ve probably seen that movie at least 15 times. One of those times was less than two years ago. Yes, I still watch that movie. It’s great and I regret nothing.

So with all of these Powered up teenagers filling my waking hours, it was only right for them to seep into my dreams. And that they did. The dream took place during the scene where the Rangers are on the island of Thedos (or how ever you spell/pronounce that) and were told by the mysterious attractive warrior chick Dulcea that they would have to reach this mystical Great Power in order to save Zordon. The scene in the dream takes place when they’re in the woods battling the skeletons of long deceased dinosaurs and other creatures who are trying to prevent them from accessing the Great Power. In the dream, I’m watching them battle these creatures and I watch them discover the Great Power and become awesome ninja warrior Rangers (although not to be confused by the series Power Rangers Ninja Storm, which was my third favorite Power Ranger Series, coming right after my 2nd favorite, Power Rangers in Space).

It might not seem like much of a dream because it’s simply replaying a scene that I’ve seen many times in my head, but what’s especially interesting about this dream is I’ve had it multiple times. It’s the exact dream every time (I slightly know how Harry felt when he kept having the same dream about Voldemort being in a creepy not fully formed body in The Goblet of Fire). I can remember having this dream at least 4 times in probably the last 15 years. What’s even more interesting is not only do I feel like I’ve had de ja vu after I wake up, but it came to a point where I realized I was having de ja vu within the dream. I didn’t necessary realize that I was in a dream, but I definitely realized that I had been in that same situation before.

The last time I had this dream was about 2 years ago and it makes me super happy every time. It reminds me of my childhood and how much fun I used to have. It also makes me want to watch the Power Rangers movie again. So naturally, this is my favorite dream.

***On a completely random note, did anyone besides my brother and I realize that in the original series the Black Ranger was played by an African American male and the Yellow Ranger was played by an Asian female? And then they go and change it up in the movie and not only replace those two actors, but suddenly the Black Ranger is now played by an Asian male and the Yellow Ranger is now played by a African American female? I’m still not sure if this was deliberate or supposed to be ironic. Either way, I find it slightly funny. Oh the glory of the 90’s.***

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