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All Things Possible
As a child, I had this recurring dream about a monster living under my bed. It would whisper things to me, but I can never quite remember what they were. They were spoken like secrets shared between two friends-- insistent, almost eagerly, and with the mysteriousness of all things possible.
The monster would tell me different secrets every time, then it would pause for a few seconds after finishing, and it always asked if it could come out from under the bed. I always said yes.
The monster would then proceed to ask if it could share my bed, because the floor underneath was cold and lonely.
Maybe it was pity, or maybe I never had a choice but to say yes, but I always said yes.
And the bed would shift, box springs creaking under added weight, blanket moving to cover both of us, something--some thing-- snuggling against my side for warmth, always accompanied by the scent of mothballs and acrylic paint.
It wasn’t spoken, but I could feel the quotation marks.
And we would lay in silence, until I woke up to the smell of mothballs and acrylic paint.
Every part of me--my hair, skin, pajamas, fingernails, and even my mouth--was covered with the scent and taste of mothballs and acrylic paint.
This perplexed me to no end until the dreams stopped when I was 15, and I forgot all about them. It wasn’t until recently that I had the dream again. Except that it kind of went differently than it normally did.
It took place in my new house with my new bed and my adult self. I remember, to this day, what the monster told me when it started to whisper.
Insistently, almost eagerly, with the mysteriousness of all things possible.
“I found you.”
And the bed shifted, the springs creaked, the blanket enveloped, and the monster embraced me in a hug I didn’t know I missed. When I tried to return the favor, my eyes opened with tears I didn’t know I possessed. The scent of mothballs and acrylic paint filled every pore of my soul, and I sobbed with the feeling that I suddenly lost something I couldn’t replace.
My monster was gone and all I was left with was