Estimated reading time — 2 minutes
My older brother is a cop. Naturally, he has a protective instinct over me, his little, only, sister. The cop factor does not help. I was always babied by my family, but me and Greg, my brother, always had a closer bond. Whenever one of my other brothers picked on me, he would get super mad at them. When I was about 12 years old, he met his fiancé and got serious with her. I was so worried she would steal my brother away, and I would never see him anymore. He quickly reassured me, and I soon began to think of his fiancé as the sister I never had.
Anyway, as I said, he is a cop. He worked crazy hours, normally coming home around 3-4 in the morning. Every night, upon arrival, he would shine his too bright flashlight into my room. My bed is against the same wall as my door, so I never saw him, but I always knew it was him. He did it just to check up on me, I was sure. I didn’t mind being woken up, and appreciated the comfort it gave me. Oddly enough, I don’t think any of my other family members being woken with beams of light at strange hours. I chalked it up to the fact that I was the only one who left my door open at night. For a while, I enjoyed the nightly ritual.
However, towards mid January of my senior year I was stressed. College was a looming monolith that I could not handle, my boss had me working 6 days a week, requiring me to wake up at 7 am even on the days I didn’t have school, and I needed the sleep I could get. What was once a small, almost funny comfort to me was now one of the biggest nuisances of my life. When I was awoken by the small beam of light, I wouldn’t be able to fall back asleep, and my frustration only grew as I brooded into the early hours of morning. One night, I snapped at my brother to stop as the light appeared. He didn’t answer, and I was worried I hurt his feelings.
“Oh well” I thought. At least he would get the hint.
But it didn’t stop. Finally, after a few more nights, once I saw the beam, I got up to confront my brother. When I walked into the hallway, it was empty. I ran to my window only to find that my brother’s car wasn’t there, meaning he wasn’t even home from work yet.
I confronted my brother the next day. He said he stopped shining the light in on me months ago, because my mother hinted at him that I needed the sleep.
We never figured out where the light was from, and I started sleeping with my door shut.