Fears In The Night

Do you ever feel afraid at night? I know I have, and as a child it was a variety of things at night that I was afraid of. It can be different for everyone.

I remember when Rylan told me about his fears in the night. He said, ”I just get so scared! If I wake up and you aren't there I think you are dead!"   

"I'm hearing just how scared you feel when you wake up and think I'm dead because you can't see me," I reflected, "you really like it when you know I'm okay and you aren't alone?" I guessed.   

"Yeah," Rylan's eyes widened as he continued, "but I get so scared my stomach hurts and it terrifies me! I want it to stop and I don't know what to do."   

"So you feel so scared your stomach hurts and it's terrifying? You really want it to stop; yet don't know what to do? I'm guessing you might like some support and new tools maybe?" I reflected with an empathy guess. 

Rylan nodded and leaned towards me slightly. Taking in his nonverbal cues, I drew in a deep breath to ground myself, then inquired, "Do you remember the tapping (Emotional Freedom Technique) we did together when you were six years old?"   

"Yeah, I stopped biting my nails then didn't I!" he answered excitedly, "If we do the tapping again will that help my fear too?"  

"Are you willing to try it now and see how it supports you? This is something you can do anytime, anywhere, whenever you need support." I responded.   

We proceeded to sink into several rounds of tapping while I named his experience out loud in the first person. After which I asked, "How does your tummy feel now?" 

Placing his hand on his tummy he paused before responding with awe in his voice, "My tummy doesn't hurt." 

Giving him a big warm smile I acknowledged, "Wow, Rylan, you are really developing so many tools to support yourself in the moment. I celebrate how you are able to seek support when you need it!"   

Rylan smiled, and then with tears building up in his eyes said, "Yeah, but other kids my age are able to do a lot more school work than me."   

"Aw, is it that you like to be included, especially with kids your age? And maybe wishing you had more power in your world? Would you just love to do and be anything you want to do or be right now?"   

He nodded as he wiped away his tears.  

"Well, I'm moved to some self-expression here son. You see, I'm not worried about that at all. You are doing some serious foundation work in your life. Do you remember why you are willing to do all this work?" *  

"So I can calm myself and not feel overwhelmed by my sensory and feel happier?" Rylan answered seeking affirmation.   

"Absolutely!" I affirmed, "And, once your foundation is solid you are going to soar wherever your interests take you and I'll be right alongside to support you. Now, are you ready to let me give you a great big Mommy-hug?!" 

Shifting my focus back to the present moment, as if on cue, Rylan's eyes opened and connecting with my gaze offered me a gorgeous big smile saying, "Good morning, Mommy, I love you!" How satisfying it is to witness my son's journey in life interweaving with my own. Establishing the firm foundation necessary for secure-attachment is enabling both of us to know it is possible to Welcome the Three R's: Resistance, Rupture and Repair while holding both our self and others with love and acceptance. 

  • Rylan would like any other kids who struggle with sensory or learning difficulties to know that the work he has done with audiblox, iLs, and tapping really supported him. Contact me if you want more information about what you may find helpful.

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