My father loved to rearrange the furniture in our house. The furniture would be changed so often, that you didn’t dare walk through in the dark for fear of bumping in to something that wasn’t there before. Not quite so often, but a least once a year he rotated bedrooms. There were three in the house – one for me, one for my older sisters, and one for my parents. I particularly enjoyed the bedroom in the front of the house because there was so much to see out of the front window. I could watch the neighbors come and go and the traffic that was always motoring up and down the street. The other two bedrooms were at the side and back of the house. Not nearly as much going on.
One time however, when I was happily living in the front bedroom, things turned not so happy. Several nights in row, after I had gone to bed, something or someone scratched on my adored front window screen. I hesitated to tell my parents at first, since they were not keen on my stories and always accused me of making things up for attention or to delay going to bed. But after several sleepless and frightened nights, I couldn’t cope with it any longer. I just knew something was trying to get me. I called them into my room and told them my plight. At first, as expected, they doubted my story. To my delight though, the scratching began – with them in the room! My father bolted out the door to the front of the house. A few minutes later he returned with a frond cut from the bush in front of my window. Here’s your scratcher, he said! I was so relieved and felt foolish for being so frightened over nothing, but at the time it sure felt like something to me.
A few weeks later, I heard the phone ring in the middle of the night; then my father’s hushed voice as he stood in the hall and quietly responded. I must have rationalized that it was a wrong number. No one ever called in the night. I woke as usual the next morning, but before I could get out of bed, my mother came in and sat down beside me. She explained that my grandfather had died in his sleep. My dad went there to help his mother. She said I didn’t have to go to school.
Two events. What I feared and worried about for days was nothing. The real tragedy came out of nowhere without worry, without warning. I think that’s how things usually are. We worry and fear things that never come to pass and rarely see the real monster coming. Perhaps we shouldn’t waste that energy over nothing, so we have more strength to defeat the monster when it does come.
Teresa Sue McAdams, co-creator of “Today’s Journey Tarot”, co-author of “Today’s Journey Tarot, A Traveler’s Guide”, co-author of “Tarot Meditations, A Journal for Self Discovery”, and author of “Lessons, The Wisdom Within Each Moment”