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Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Word of the Day, XVII

Word of the Day: FEAR, or “My Brother, the Superhero”

I think I’ve figured out that I was an insomniac as a kid.

Or maybe it’s not that I just figured it out but that I only recently started saying it out loud, as a reality of my childhood.

I don’t think I’ll ever forget staring at the bright blue radio/clock numbers as time passed, when I couldn’t sleep. I would get so frustrated sometimes I would cry until I’d finally nod off.

There was a full week or two when I barely slept, after watching a made-for-TV movie about the plague coming back, starring the teacher from Head of the Class. I was sure everyone I knew would catch the plague and die. I stayed up late night after night, reading Little Women, but I kept myself from finishing the book because I was sure Beth’s death would haunt me and keep me from sleeping.

And sometimes, when I did finally sleep, I’d have terrible nightmares. About being attacked by oversized bees or intruders or people not being who they seemed.

I remember talking to my older brother about this one day.

He suggested that we make up a superhero power for me, so that, if I started to get scared at night, I’d remember I had this superpower and I’d be able to defeat whatever was frightening me.

Maybe he remembers what we ultimately decided my power would be because I don’t. What I do remember is not having a hard time falling asleep after that, for years.

He still has dreams in which he has superpowers.

Maybe, in them, he’s saving me from all the bad guys that haunted me when I was little.


catherine said...

What a good brother :)

Annie said...

he had his moments ;)

Mel said...

That was beautiful, Annie. I really enjoyed reading that. You're a great writer.

And your brother does sound pretty cool.

Annie said...

Thank you so much, Mel!!