"I'm afraid of the bad guys!" my almost four year old daughter, Megan, says when it's time for bed.
I assure her that there are no bad guys.
"All the bad guys are in jail?" she asks and I lie and say, "Yes."
"But what about the bad guy's uncles?" she wants to know.
"Maybe the uncles are just silly," Megan giggles, thinking about silly bad guy uncles.
I tell her I have special spray that keeps bad guys out of your room and I take my Clinique Happy perfume and spray it all around her door. But then she is worried the bad guys will get into her brother, Alex's room, so we spray his door, too.
When I finally put my head on the pillow at night, I am scared of the bad guys, too. How easy it was when a parent could reassure you that good always wins, that no bad guy can ever get you, when you could slumber peacefully, blissfully unaware of the real evil that is, in fact, out there.
But I am the mom, and I reassure Megan, night after night, that no bad guy will ever bother her. We are safe from bad guys. And my strongest prayer is I am right.