I spent last night in a race car. Well, not really IN a race car, more like half hanging out of one. As you can imagine, I barely slept. But at least it was better than last week when I woke up in a boat. Truth be told, I sleep around a lot. (But does this make me an outstanding mother? I say yes!) However, lately I find myself really missing my own bed. There’s nothing I can do about it, though. It’s the monsters’ fault.

Monsters have plagued me since childhood. Mine were of the closet-dwelling variety, only to be rivaled by the under-the-bed faction. And those closet-dwellers are particularly terrible. The beasts would keep me up all night whilst leering at me from behind the wooden slats in my closet door. I’m fairly certain they threw parties in there too, just to torture me. So I would cry out to my mother, who would turn on the hall light, the closet light, and my Holly Hobbie night light until my room blazed brighter than the Sun. I would still lie awake, though, paralyzed by the thought of what was to come. I think the only reason I survived my childhood at all was my firm grasp of the laws governing monster behavior. 

Despite the lack of proof that monsters actually exist, a surprising wealth of facts about them has been passed down through the ages as sacred wisdom. 1. Monsters are nocturnal. 2. Parents are their kryptonite. The moment an adult walks into a room, *Poof* they disappear. 3. Monsters can sense movement. So stay perfectly still! And never, NEVER, turn your back on one. 

Of course your bedroom door must also be up to code. It must either be entirely open or entirely shut. No in-between ajar nonsense. That goes for your eyes, too. Keep your peepers plastered in the OMG! position all night long. Of course there are exceptions to every rule, like if you absolutely must get out of bed. (Think bathroom emergency.) You may then run like your pants are on fire. The shrieking somehow confuses them. Which brings me to the most important of all monster rules: You must never, EVER, put your feet on the floor. Do not dangle them over the edge of the bed or allow them to pass the invisible line that separates your mattress from the rest of the room. 

Based on all of this scientific monsterology, you’d think we humans were defenseless, but nope. Our magical protection lies in our bedsheets. Yup, no matter the thread count, these flimsy coverings provide an impervious barrier to everything a monster can throw at us, from razor-sharp claws and demon teeth to glowing red laser eyes and flesh-eating saliva.

I don’t claim to understand it, I just know all bed linens are like Kevlar to scary things. So pull ‘em up to your chin and consider yourself locked and loaded. However none of this knowledge solves my sleeping-around problem. 

You see, monsters are currently partying in my own children’s closets. So when the beasts start dancing, I join them in their plastic race car bed and wooden boat bed (both of which are roughly the size of a Triscuit). I know, I know, in a few years my kids will grow out of this phase. In the future, these current invisible pests will start to appear in daylight hours—only then they will be disguised as people. Yet I hope my boys will feel my invisible arms around them once again and feel secure; possessing the confidence to look them square in the eyes, unblinking, and make them disappear. After all, if we’ve learned anything, we know love and light make monsters vanish in a *Poof,* right? 


Jane Suter is one funny mom. Tell her your funny monster stories at njfamily.com/jane.