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The Scariest Night of My Life (a true tale from Halloween 2007)

The lights were off.  No glowing pumpkins sat on our home’s front porch.  Zero candy bowls were gently placed at the door for children seeking chocolates.

Darkness, fear and uncertainty filled the air inside my house instead.  The eerie feelings grew with each breath I took.

Continual screams blasted in my aching ears.  I had not slept in two days.  As I glanced in the mirror, I did not recognize myself.  Who was this zombie standing before me?

While neighborhood kids walked the streets for goodies, I stood pacing in a barely lit hallway.  Panic was creeping in.  Anxiety was filling up my entire body and worse, my mind.  My life felt like a deceiving trick rather than a treat during this Halloween night in 2007.

Earlier that day I had nurses and doctors helping me.  I had a team of caregivers looking out for my best interest.  I had hope and stamina and expertise at my fingertips.

Now I was alone, completely and utterly alone.  Well almost…

As the cries grew louder from my two-day old infant daughter, I wanted a ghoul, troll or witch to take me away.  I hoped a wizard would cast a spell upon us both.  Would a Death Eater find its way from Hogwarts to me?  Would Frankenstein’s Monster grab hold of my baby?  Would I transform into Mr. Hyde any moment now?  Would Dickens’ Ghost of Christmas Yet to Come show me my dark future – revealing the mistakes I was about to make?

Why would I have these crazy thoughts?  Because as a first-time mother, I was afraid.  I did not know what the hell I was doing.  All the classes and parenting books did not prepare me for my first night home alone with my child on All Hallows’ Eve.  I was petrified and could not calm her shrieks or my doubts.

I had waited nine months and longer for this bundle of joy. Yet now she seemed a dwarf who could remove my soul and sanity.

I reminded myself to pause.  I calmed my racing pulse by breathing with more intent.  Slowly I discovered small bursts of courage.

Eventually I rocked that crying baby of mine to sleep.  Soon after that, I drifted off to slumber.

Vivian+Mom4 - Oct 30

Weeks later I was less fearful of being a mom.  My daughter and I settled into a routine that suited us both.  In time I began to tell funny, heartwarming stories of my child rather than this frightening true tale.

Still, I will never forget our first Halloween together, the scariest night of my life.  ‘Twas an evening when I almost wished my baby to be stolen by Jareth, the Goblin King deep into the Labyrinth.

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