How do you deal with kids nightmares?. A few months ago, Kyle woke up crying inconsolably. I tried my best to calm him down and assure him- it’s not real; it was just a dream. You’re safe here with me. I asked him what it was about, but he refused and said it was too scary. The next few days, he would tell me bits and pieces about it.
“There was a bad wizard, and an old man. And there were pins and needles.” I was curious to know more, but didn’t want to force him if he wasn’t ready. I suggested we stop watching and reading fairytales for awhile, and then forgot all about it.
Tonight, as I was putting him to sleep, he asked me if I remembered the scary dream that he had.
“The one with the wizard?“
“Do you want to talk about it and try to make the wizard seem funny?”
“Okay! What if he was like Magic Koopa from Mario?”
“That would be so cute! And what if he liked to dance like the dancing Koopa?
We both started laughing, but then he turned serious again.
“There’s more that I didn’t tell you about, mom, because it’s too scary. There was also an old man who had his head stuck in a helmet. And there was a duck. And the wizard pinned some needles on the duck… like twelve needles. That’s why I called it pins and needles. And they were so big. And you know what? The duck died…”
“Oh no… That is such a sad dream. Can we try to change it a bit so it won’t be as scary?”
“Well, what if the wizard was a good wizard? And the old man was good, but he was so hungry and he had nothing to eat. The duck was his friend, but the duck was very weak and was about to die soon. And the duck was in so much pain- he said, “please help me, I want to be at peace. You can eat me so that you can be strong again.”
The old man said- “but I do not want to hurt you, you are my friend.” But the duck said: “I am old, and I have lived a long and beautiful life. I am alone and my whole family is in heaven. I would like to be with them.”
So the good wizard said “I can help you. I have magic needles that can help stop the pain.” The needles were big, but they did not hurt. They stopped all of the pain, and the duck was smiling as he died in peace. Then his spirit went to heaven, where his whole family was waiting to embrace him.
The old man was sad, but he knew that the duck was happy. He needed to feed himself, so he prayed, then carefully cooked and ate the duck. He became stronger, and he was finally able to remove the helmet. Then he planted some carrots and vegetables to eat, and swore to take care of all the ducks and never eat them again. And all the ducks were so happy, especially the duck in heaven. Because he was with his family, and he was also able to help his friend become stronger.”
“That’s a nice story, mom.”
“Do you feel better now after talking about it?”
“Thank you for finally telling me about your dream. I hope you can tell me about it right away next time, so you won’t stay scared for long. Now it’s time to sleep.”
We hugged each other for a while. I thought he had fallen asleep, but then he suddenly put his head up.
“Did you enjoy talking about my dream and making it a little bit nice?”
And he finally drifted off to sleep.