When I was little I would pull the covers up over my head and hope that it was enough to ward off the things that I hoped would leave me alone while I slept- not that I could ever sleep. I was afraid of so much, doubtful of so little, and would jump at the slightest sound, because some part of me never refused to believe that these nightmare things were ever impossible. I was afraid of big, strange dogs, afraid of seeing dead babies appear in the corner of my room, afraid of crank callers from the grave, afraid of being abducted by aliens, afraid of dying in some war started by stupid people, afraid of so many diseases, afraid of seeing the Devil's silhouette through my curtains, afraid of slipping into some dead other dimension and never getting back, afraid of having a voodoo curse put on me, afraid of being possessed by demons (which some say has already happened.)
And with those fear stained blankets pulled over my head, I know that it was never about actually believing they would protect me from any horror, it was about keeping myself blind to ever really finding out if ANYTHING was real enough to be afraid of.
Being afraid meant there was a chance that whatever frightened you was something that actually existed, that these translucent voiceless ghost-infants were out there, somewhere, just waiting for you to find them some night, that Devil REALLY was watching you, wanting you.
There was a sense of comfort I got from that dread of things supernatural, lurking where only such things lurk. But, so far as I can tell, I've never seen a ghost, or shuddered in the actual presence of a GOD or a DEVIL.
And where I once hid from these things, I now stay up dreaming about them, knowing that even if I pissed my pants at the sight of them, I would at least KNOW that the world was full of something MORE, something real beyond this machine life that replaced the little universe beneath the blankets.