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What Were You Afraid of When You Were a Child?

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There were many things that I was scared of when I was little. Some of the fears I acquired were due to prevailing gossips and unfounded tales talked about by the people who were close to me – friends, cousins and my parents.

But as I mature into my teenage years, I realised the folly and absurdities of my fears. In fact, some of them were so ludicrous like lurking monsters under my bed and demon-like character that brutally attacked anyone during Halloween. But at such a tender age, these fears seemed real to me and no one, not even my parents could say otherwise.

When I was four, my mom had me convinced that if I did not brush my teeth before sleeping, a monster would appear at midnight from under my bed. He would first throw me up in the air several times before catching me and would then proceed to wringing my scrawny body like a piece of rag before slowly swallowing me, relishing every bit of crushing bones and cartilage. Yes, that certainly made my hair stand on ends but and it was indeed an effective tactic to get me to brush my teeth without fail every night. To this day, I do not have a single cavity and would go to the dentist twice a year for the monster also feeds on plague!

Secondly, when I was about six, my cousin, Danny, brought me to watch a horror movie, ‘Halloween.’ Since I could not differentiate then what was real or otherwise, what I saw felt as real as life itself. There was a scene in the movie where the protagonist, Sam chopped up his buddy’s body like a butcher and went on a rampage stabbing innocent victims’ necks as if it was a normal thing to do. He would only kill people who celebrated Halloween for he never had the chance to celebrate this festive occasion while he was growing up. Growing up without a father, with mum constantly busy working and a sister who always had her own plans, he was consumed with jealousy so he figured that no one else ought to enjoy this pageant either. I felt for this villain for his basic desire of having a normal family was never fulfilled but I do not condone the horrific and gory killings of all those innocent children and young adults. I prayed every single night to my
dearest God to keep Sam away from my family. Although I do not celebrate Halloween, I found myself going to bed as early 8 o’clock to avoid from being attacked by Sam.

Finally, I have a phobia of cats, any type of cats. It all began when a friend of my sister, Patrick, spun a tale about the origin of cats and how these felines are associated with black magic and misfortunes, especially black cats. He had me believed that an encounter with such a creature would spell tragic misfortune including death. Cats are descendants of witches who purportedly transformed themselves to avoid being caught and killed. I was won over that cats could really cast a spell.

Over the years, I did get a good grasp of overcoming these phobias mostly through logical reasoning and my own sensibilities but I still could not find it in my heart to accept cats as a domestic pet in my home nor would I be comfortable in the presence of this creature.

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