"Papa, papa, il y a un oiseau dans ma chambre!" Dad, dad, there's a bird in my room!
Of course we knew that was totally silly and that she'd had a nightmare. Eric assured her,
"Je crois pas qu'il y a un oiseau dans ta chambre. C'etait un cauchemar. Viens, je vais voir." I doubt there is a bird in your room. You just had a nightmare. Come, I'll take a look.
He found a bat flying around in her room.
This called for my superior bat-catching abilities; I've caught at least 6 bats in the past few years. Here's how you catch a bat:
1. Get a medium-sized bath towel.Eric settled Zari down, then came back to bed. About a half hour later, he woke up convinced that there was a bat in our bed. (He does this fairly regularly. Over the years I've had to fend off attacks when he thought some creature was on top of me and assure him that no, there really wasn't a giant lobster-sized centipede trying to attack me.)
2. Close the doors to the room if possible.
3. Swat at the bat every time it flies by you. Bats tend to fly in circles when they're trapped indoors, so it's pretty easy to swat them down. You have to really snap the towel quickly. Once it falls to the floor, throw the towel over the bat and gently pick it up.
4. Release outdoors.
I told him, "There's not a bat in the bed. You're just having a dream." I used my best mother-telling-her-child-she-had-a-nightmare voice.
"Are you sure?"
"Yes. It was just a dream. Go to bed."