Who’s Afraid of the Dark?

I am afraid of the dark in a big way.  And I’m not referring to “the dark side” but just the general blackness that creeps into the house after the sun goes down.  My three-year old sleeps better in the dark than I do.  I am almost thirty years old for heaven’s sake and this is ridiculous, but I’m still lying awake in the wee hours jumping at all the bumps in the night.

I haven’t always been afraid of the dark.  It’s definitely a recent phenomenon – recent like since I became the only adult in the house.  And I’m not about to put on my tiara and pink heels and cry for a man to take care of me.  Nothing like that.  But at 1:00 A.M. when all is black and the pyracantha bush is scratching at the back window, I start imagining shadows in the doorway and footsteps in the hall and empty beds in the nursery and I get myself so worked up that it’s 4:00 A.M. before I finally fall asleep clutching my cell phone to my chest.

Last night I tried sleeping with a hall light on.  It didn’t help.  Because the light was on I woke up over and over again, every time feeling disoriented and frightened. 

Remember when you were a kid and it seemed like adults weren’t scared of anything, like they were invincible to things like bad dreams and the dark.  I wish that were true.

For me, this is one of the great hardships of being a single parent.  I am having such a hard time sleeping and I need to sleep.  I need to figure something out, and soon. 

Do you have grown-up-kid fears?
What do you do to overcome those fears?  Any suggestions? 
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