Photo by lalesh aldarwish from Pexels
When I was a kid, I had a good-sized closet, one that I could walk into and had shelves on both sides. There was room for a dresser on one side and a toy box on the other that sat under my few hanging clothes.
And, of course, this meant lots of room for monsters.
I remember many nights when I propped a chair against the closet door to make sure none of them escaped. Not only would they probably eat me, but what if they joined forces with the monster under the bed? I would be doomed for sure.
With the door blocked and the underside of the bed checked with a flashlight, I would eventually fall asleep.
But guess what?
Of course, I would dream of monsters.
I actually had a recurring dream of one in my closet that was very much like a gorilla. In fact, I think it was a gorilla. I remember running downstairs (in the dream) to tell my dad about it, but he was in an important meeting and wouldn’t be interrupted.
I couldn’t escape those monsters even when I was asleep.
Another time, I remember having to sleep in the basement for some reason for a time. Maybe a relative was in my room, I don’t remember. But there was no closet in the basement and those monsters roamed freely down there. I still have a vivid memory of monsters parading past my bed while I cowered under the covers.
My imagination as a child was extremely active and sometimes terrifying. I’m grateful it is still very active today, though the terror has abated.
For my upcoming picture book, The Wrong Monster, I asked the illustrator to make the main character’s room layout just like mine at the time. It’s a lot of fun to see my old bedroom as an illustration.
Do you have any good monster-in-the-closet stories from your childhood? I’d love to hear them!