The boys finished their big day with a few minutes of The Good Night Show, where Kipper the dog briefly encountered a green dragon with red eyes.
I confess, I didn't personally see it. But believe you me, I heard about it.
On their way to bed, there were multiple references and reminders of the dragon, which naturally led to many reminders that dragons are not real, boys are always safe, and you can always ask God to help you feel brave and safe when you are afraid.
Still, the topic lingered.
Finally, after teeth were brushed and blankets were tucked, I decided to call on one of my child psychology classes in college, and I composed an impromptu Me Story about a boy who successfully overcomes a struggle nearly identical to their own.
"Boys, let me tell you a story."
(Insert precious, clean, sweet-smelling boys, with blankets pulled up to their chins.)
"Once upon a time, there was a boy named Benny. And he was watching TV one day, and he saw a blue dragon with yellow eyes. And no matter what he did, he couldn't stop thinking about that scary dragon. Finally, he asked God to help him. He said, 'Dear God, I know that dragons are not real, and I am safe. Please help me to be brave tonight, and help me to sleep well. Amen.' And just like that, Benny snuggled into his bed, pulled his blankets close, and fell asleep feeling brave and safe. The end."
And Tucker said, "Mommy, I want to tell you a story."
"Okay. Go for it."
"Once upon a time, there was a boy named David. And he was watching TV, and he saw a green dragon with red eyes. And when he went to sleep, the dragon flew around the room and bit him."
Tyler's eyes got great big.
"But was David safe?"
"Yes. Until the dragon came into his bedroom and bit him."
"Tuck, make sure this story ends happy."
"Okay. And finally, they ate lunch and had dessert and cookies and popsicles. The end."
So much for this bedtime success story.