Thursday, March 25, 2010

I.D. Is Officially Scared of The Toothfairy.

He asked that she not come to the house tonight.

That is a text message I received from my sister regarding my nephew (who must have lost his first tooth). I haven't gotten the whole story yet, she is supposed to call me today with the details. After I made a mental note and plopped the toothfairy down next to Michael Jackson ala Thriller Video in the pile that makes up my nephew's fears I got to thinking about childhood fears...

I had a few of my own that I can remember clearly. One still hangs on today. I wouldn't say that I am fearful of it anymore, but it still "gives me the creeps" as my daughter Jordan would say.

Fear #1 Fear of being physically harmed by a "body snatcher." Meaning, a body snatcher comes, takes over the body of a loved one, unbeknownst to me, and then loved one begins prodding me with a stick or otherwise abusing me. This is terrifying. I know that abuse happens in our world. Thankfully I've not been abused by a loved one. What a terrifying experience though right?

Fear #2 This one is very hard to describe. It's fear of a particular facial expression. It's an expression rarely seen in real life. It is a look of bugged out happiness. Artificial happiness, if you will. All I see is a close up of a face (usually Male); the face is expressionless and then all of a sudden will begin to grin a crazy, toothy, over exaggerated smile while widening its eyes to the point of bugging out. I don't know where this fear came from. This is the one that stays with me and still creeps me out. A few years ago there was a cereal commercial (although I might have completely blocked out the actual product) like this: It's shot in Black and White. Close up on a sleepy, droopy faced man in his late 40's early 50's. He takes a bite of cereal (or something) and instantly his expression changes to the one I described above. I can't stand it. I'm getting goosebumps just typing about it!

Fear #3.  A completely irrational one that entered around middle school age and followed me through high school. It is a fear of being shot in the buttocks (that body part specifically) with an arrow or bullet that has been trained to hit me from my bedroom window as I lay helplessly in my bed sleeping on my stomach, or about to fall asleep in this same position. Now I know a shot to the buttocks is rarely, if ever, fatal...but this fear caused me to always have to cover my ass with something while sleeping. Usually on a hot night a sheet would suffice. Again, I know that a sheet would not stop the penetrating effects of an arrow or bullet, but this is irrational fearful logic we are talking about. Thankfully this doesn't bother me anymore...but I think it's because I sleep on the second floor and an intruder is less likely to scale my house with a bow and arrow, or a gun and shoot me from the window!

Despite these irrational fears, I've grown up to be a fairly well adjusted adult. But sometimes, and I hope I'm not alone, I look at my little girls' fears and just this normal??

Here's a list of their fears (to my knowledge):

Olivia, my youngest, at over 2 1/2, has a fear of Tigers (really I think it's Lions, but she confuses the two). She will often come over to me and will whisper, "There's a Tiger in our house." Her eyes will get big and her lips will pucker into the tiniest "O" as she searches my face for the proper response. There aren't any tigers in our house, I will say. Usually I whisper back. Sometimes she will let out a scream and run around the house. Sometimes she will tell me that "Kingston is a Tiger". Kingston is our dog. He isn't a tiger. I will say.
This is our dog. He doesn't even look like a Tiger, or a Lion, and Olivia is not in the least bit afraid of him for that matter. So I'm not sure what's going on here.  Really I think she just likes to see the reaction she gets. If you could see the face she makes...really it's too cute for words.

Ava, my spunky 4 year old, isn't afraid of too much.  She says she's afraid of the dark, but I don't buy it. I think she just says that she is afraid of the dark because she thinks she is supposed to be afraid of something and she thinks it will get her out of doing things.  Ava, please go throw this tissue into the garbage can in the kitchen.  Ava, But it is DARK in there.  And she will ball her fists and press them up to her chin with the "look" of fear on her face. Ava, It's been a while since you made a trip to the potty...get upstairs and go. Same reaction from Ava. Ava isn't scared, I assure you.  If there's one thing I've learned it is that Ava isn't scared. She is a little lazy. She is very good at making excuses and manipulating others into doing things for her that she herself doesn't want to do.   One truly fearful reaction that I witnessed from Ava was when she freaked out because Jordan told her that there was a spider crawling on her. I didn't see the spider, but I did see the overblown, fearful panic and tantrum that resulted.  There was no calming her, no rationalizing with her. Ava was officially scared. 

Jordan, My sensitive 6 year old, has one fear in particular that I just can't figure out.  Jordan has never been an animal lover.  We've had a dog all of her life--Reagan, a fluffy white American Eskimo, and after Reagan passed we got Kingston, a boxer.  We've also had a myriad of fish.  She merely tolerates these pets. She was fearful of Kingston when he was a pup...the puppy energy and jumping up, she wasn't a fan. Now that he is a big baby (see above picture) at 2 yrs old (people years), she will gingerly pet him. But basically she goes about her day without paying too much attention to him.  She is very skittish around animals of any kind but the bain of her existance? Birds. Avoids them at the pet store. Covers her ears to the sound of squawking or clucking. Cowers in fear at the faintest ruffling of feathers...and if the bird flutters...she can't handle it.  

When she was 2 we went for lunch at MickyD's one day and decided to sit outside in the play area to eat. Mistake number one. Mistake number two was not noticing the errant french fry hit the floor. Immediately, a flock of happy little chickadees made their entrance and Jordan was very afraid as they fluttered at our feet fighting over the fry. And her fear was born, and grew...

When she was 4, we went on a trip to the outer banks and decided to eat at Sonic one day. HUGE mistake.  Seagulls love to hang out at Sonic and they are not shy about making there presence known. A large white/gray bird about four feet from our table let out a gullish cry and Jordan let out a cry of her own. This was straight out of Halloween or something. The most high pitched blood curdling scream I have heard in real life. 

At this point, she will tolerate robins or chickadees or grackles in the yard. Usually, this is when she loves our dog, she will sic Kingston on them. He will bound playfully into the yard and the birds will flap away creating a safe and happy haven.  Her fear seems to be focussing itself in on Pigeons--Rock Pigeons--the gray ones that look more like doves than their green irradescent-headed cousins.  The problem with the pigeons is their herky jerky motions, and also their sound.  Jordan always covers her ears in the presence of birds AND WHENEVER she is afraid. She doesn't clutch her heart, she doesn't cover her mouth (what I feel are normal reactions to fear)...she covers her ears.  It's because of the sound.  When a Rock Pigeon flies away it makes a squeaky sound that corresponds with its wings beating...It kind of sounds like the wings need oiled.  I guess that's the best way to describe it.  She hates that sound.

Birds in cages, or glass cases, no better. I've told her a million times that they can't get out, they are more afraid of her than she is of them...but the best she will do is stand three feet away, hiding behind my back.  I try to expose her to birds. She is not going to get away from them!! I don't force her, but I do want to expose her to them so she doesn't act like a freak about them in public. Things have gotten better.  Although the other day there was a Rock Pigeon in the front yard when we pulled up in the van and she wouldn't get out until I got out and shooed it away.  I didn't even see the damn thing, but I knew it would fly when I got close.

The irony in the situation is that when you ask her what her favorite animal is she will say "a Flamingo."  But not because it's a bird, because it is PINK. And my girl loves her pink. 

Sorry for the lengthy blog...I do have the tendancy to do that don't I?  When I pick a topic I usually have a lot to say...All this, to get to my question for you:  What are your fears? Do your kids have any strange fears? How do you deal with fear, your own, or your kid's?

2 Reader Remarks:

Krajcimama said...

I've never heard of anyone afraid of the tooth fairy! Too funny!

My biggest fears when I was little (and truthfully they still freak me out a little) were Oompa Loompa and those flying monkeys on Wizard of Oz. Seriously.

Anonymous said...

Isaac is still afraid of Michael Jackson, riding the school bus, the dark, and anything halloween related..haha. After explaining how beautiful the tooth fairy is, Isaac reluctantly agreed to leave his first (and second) tooth under his pillow with no further worries. His list is quite long, but heres to hoping he grows out of them!

Post a Comment

Gimme some sugar! <3


Related Posts with Thumbnails