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Hailey learns about scarey things in the night

Pasta-ossoms, the displacement night monsters, have proven more compelling and dreadful than the wolves she had feared were threats in her backyard
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By Granddad

Hailey is just learning and asking about things in the night.

Just a few days ago, her concern was one we all have. She wanted to know about the wolfses outside at night in her backyard.

Her Dad told her there weren't any wolves, that the scariest things out there were opossums - or maybe a potato monster.

Hailey wasn't frightened of the potato monster, but the opossum intrigued her.

"What's a possum-cat," she asked her dad.

He remembered a picture he had taken of a prime example of the species, perched - or maybe roosting - in a tree.

"That's a pasta-cat?" she asked. And he told her, "Yes, that's a 'possum."

Pen thought that her curiosity was quelled. She seemed satisfied for the moment.

But the later, on another night, when they were walking out as a family, she held back. "A pasta-ossom might get me," she said, though her fears subsided when her Dad picked her up and carried her. Pasta-ossoms can't hurt you when you are carried high, in the arms of your daddy. Nothing can hurt a three year old there.

But she has a lingering anxiety, which surfaces often, even when they walk to the park in board daylight. She carries her binoculars and insists on frequent stops, to scan the trees for pasta-ossoms.

They're still real to her, for the moment, though a worry now only for those in Shelby County, thanks goodness.

She'll grow out of the pasta-ossom fear phase soon, as we all do.

She'll be making room for more adult phobias along the way, for ever more imaginative worries.

Hailey is the granddaughter of Linda & Ed Waggener of Columbia, KY, and Kay & Ken Smith of Flatwoods, Greenup County, KY.

This story was posted on 2015-04-19 18:18:20
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Hailey, watchful for a pasta-ossoms

2015-04-19 - Shelby County, KY - Photo by Pen.
She's three and now carries the concerns of maturity. She's not so concerned about the wolfses she worried about earlier; her concern now is a about the pasta-ossom, a creature her Dad told her about to allay her fear of wolves.

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A pasta-ossom, up in a tree, ready to pounce on you

2015-04-19 - Shelby County, KY - Photo By Pen.
And this is the picture Pen showed Hailey, and inadvertently planted a new worry in her mind, of the pasta-ossoms which live outside her door. The photographer does not note whether this one is a jack or a jill, or if one gender is scarier than the other.

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