Monster Cricket

Once upon a time….

When the kids were small I was separated from my soon to be ex husband and had found refuge in my parents home. Although we had separate bedrooms my children actually slept in the same room as me. Lennon slept tucked under my arm and Drew slept in a trundle bed my dad made that slid neatly under my bed. Lennon had night terrors from anxiety (This is an entirely different story) and I needed to be there immediately to help him chase his demons back where they belonged. Drew was never one who enjoyed snuggling up but did want to be alone in a different room than us.

We all had a fairly simple schedule. My parents both worked and my dad woke early to go to work. My mom followed him in her routine. They slept in the downstairs bedroom and we slept in the upstairs bedroom. When they came up to get ready for work I closed my door tightly and we generally slept through them leaving and got up whenever the kids got up.

One night about two am I was laying in bed and realized I had been woken by a cricket. I lay there about thirty minutes or so. Dozing…..“CHEEEEEEP. CHEEEEEEEEEP” annoyed…….maybe it stopped…….dozing…….”CHEEEEEEEP. CHEEEEEEEEEEEP”……annoyed…….. Maybe it died………..dozing…….“CHEEEEEEEEP. CHEEEEEEEEP”.

I didn’t want to wake my kids by getting up to pursue the cricket but I also couldn’t sleep. I lay there listening. “CHEEEEEEEEEP……CHEEEEEEEEP” I suddenly realized there was another sound in the room, “CHEEEEEEEEP. CHEEEEEEEEEEP”, a raspy noise, like heavy breathing and hiccups, “CHEEEEEEEEEP……CHEEEEEEEEP”. I leaned over the side of the bed to see my, “CHEEEEEEEP……CHEEEEEEP” tiny daughter in her bed huddled in a ball sobbing. “CHEEEEEEEEEP….CHEEEEEEEEEP!”

I say gently, “Drew? Are you ok?”
“CHEEEEEEEEEP……CHEEEEEEEEEP”
She hiccups and whispered , “There is a monster in here making funny squeaking sounds.” Lennon immediately bursts into tears, “THATS A MONSTER?!?! I thought it was just a cricket!”

I got up and began an angry hunt for that cricket. The search was futile, of coarse.

Three hours later my parents came upstairs to find I’d make breakfast and we’d started a movie before dawn because none of us were going back in that room until the cricket had vacated the premises.

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