Monday, September 30, 2013

Monday Mantra: AHHHH!

mantra is a sound, syllable, word, or group of words that is considered capable of "creating transformation".

Every Monday I will post a new thought, idea, or focus for the week. When you need a breather from life, when you need a little inspiration, or when you're about to jump over the conference table and strangle your co-worker, remember the mantra.

Monday Mantra: Face your fears...with a handy, dandy weapon, if needed.
As long as I can remember, I've had a serious-verging-on-completely-insane fear of spiders. All of the horror movies I've watched in my life have certainly not helped, but occurrences from my childhood are what really sealed the deal for me.

When I was about 4, my family moved into a new house. I was playing hide and seek and I hid myself right into a giant spider web complete with several spiders. I shudder even now, remembering that dark, dark day. On another occasion, my grandmother convinced me to swap out my Fruit Loops for Raisin Bran. I wasn't all about that life with health in it (or raisins) back then, so I slowly but carefully picked the raisins out one by one. The only problem was that one of them wasn't a raisin. Even when I would take showers, spiders would parachute off the side and land directly on me, leaving me slipping and screaming all over the place. Damn little aero dynamic spiders. They had to have gotten there from some invisible portal that had transported them to me because trust me, I checked for spiders everywhere. Add all of that together with me growing up with a forest outside my back door and you get a lot of black widows and GIANT ASS wolf spiders every-freaking-where.

Trauma, I tell you.

Since moving to the city, I've been fairly fortunate in not having to deal with mass amounts of spiders on a regular basis. I've even become somewhat brave and killed some all by myself (high fiving myself right now). That was until last week, anyway. Last week is a whole other story.

It's Friday night. I don't have to be anywhere, do anything, see anyone. I was all excited about my incredibly laid back evening filled with New Girl episodes on Netflix. I get up, take a few steps down my hall when I see it- a ginormous spider, crouched near my hall closet. I panic. I grab the closest thing I can find, which is vinegar, and try to vinegar it to death. It doesn't even phase the beast. The spider runs off and ducks (Ducks! He had to duck to get under the door, he was that big!) under the hall closet doors, vanishing into a world filled with all of my Christmas wrapping paper and bags. There was no way I was going in there alone.

I call my boyfriend.

The following is a brief account of my screaming/frantic whispering/angry hollering/terrified laughter cracked out message that I left him. It was like three people were possessing my body. This will not make any sense, but it's the closest I can come to explaining it.

"There is a  GIANT ASS SPIDER IN MY CLOSET!!!! A GIANT SPIDER!!! *crazy laughter* Hahaha! *whispering* What am I going to do? WhatamIgoingtodo?! Spiderinthehall…giant...vinegar! *back to yelling* AHHHHH! Not. Dead. *whispering again in a very high pitched voice* Definitely... not...dead! *yelling* IT DUCKED to get under the door. Ducked! GIANT! *whacked out laughing* me...."

Since he did not answer his phone, and I did not want this monster escaping (especially since I was going to be gone for the weekend) I went with Plan B. The reason I had a Plan B was because I may have used this method before in dealing with giant spiders. Possibly. I can neither confirm or deny this.

I grab a rolled up magazine as to carefully open the closet door where my painting tape is stored. I peer in, check all surrounding areas, and grab the tape. I carefully close the door with the rolled up magazine and grab a small step ladder. I then begin the task of taping up every single inch of space where the spider could escape from, therefore preventing an unwanted surprise visit later on. The following resulted:

I'd like to think I'm a creative problem solver.
About halfway through this my very concerned boyfriend calls me. He thought someone had died based on the message I left earlier which was, apparently, not clear at all. There was a lot of screaming, what can I say? I quickly informed him of the actual situation and then hung up as I had to finish taping off all escape routes. If there's one thing I'm good at, it's taping things. Good news: It only took me about 4 hours to calm down once the spider was effectively trapped.

The next day I go home to visit my mom.

Three things you should know before I proceed into Chapter 2 of this story: 1) I usually stay at my grandmother's old house, which is currently being remodeled and 2) I took all of the sheets, towels, and basically everything washable home to wash at my house during the remodel, leaving nothing in the house at all. Nothing. 3) The Universe it out to get me.

Thinking that I've left the spider situation behind me, I relax into a nice Saturday out and about with my mom. As the evening approaches, I head to my grandmother's house to get ready for bed. Before I can do that though, I have to unload everything in my car, including the bedding. I don't get very far before I see it- a BIGGER spider, presumably on crack, running back and forth over and over and over again, right in front of the front door. To put things into perspective, the first spider was about half dollar sized. This one, though, this one was the size of a child's fist. A large child's fist. This one was clearly The Rock of the spider world.

I go find something to kill it with. I get back and see it move right over the front door, where the door and the wall meet, truly trapping me because, if I open the door, it will fall right on my head. I pace back and forth in the house. Back home right now, where I'm from, it's cold at night. And with every blanket, facecloth, and even curtain piled in my car, I have nothing to sleep on, let alone wash my hands with. I'm super screwed at this point. I do what any self respecting adult would do in this situation with only herself and her beloved wiener dog to protect from the beast and I call my mom. Bless her heart, she drives out and kills this thing without so much as screaming twice. Once, but not twice. I finally get to bed.

The next day I see a tarantula and another giant spider, but from a far enough away distance that allows me to flee and never look back. I have no idea what's gone wrong in the world or what I did to deserve all of this. Sunday night I go back home.

I hop in the shower to wash away the horror of the weekend and feel a tiny little needle like jab on the bottom of my foot. I look down, see nothing, and continue with my shower thinking I must be delusional at this point. As I towel off, I once again look down and this time I see something move. A little black something that was positioned perfectly on the shower drain. A spider.

I leap out and look at my foot, fully expecting it to already be decaying and turning into a foot zombie body part while the rest of me slowly wither and dies with it. I grab a glass and trap the spider in the shower, knowing my only hope of surviving relies solely in identifying it for medical authorities. It's late and although I'm traumatized I'm still courteous, so I text my boyfriend.

Are you awake? 

Please be awake because I just got bit by a spider. 

No, I'm not kidding. 

Then, I call him. See? Courteous. I waited a whole 55 seconds.

We both spend quite some time Googling pictures of spiders, which, by the way, is TERRIFYING. I mean it. Don't ever do it.

Eventually, we find the one that got me and determine it's a house spider. I'll live to see another day, supposedly. I finally go to bed only to have very serious spider nightmares all night long. At one point, I even leaped out of bed, grabbed my dog, and ran out the room before I realized it was a dream. Stupid Google with your stupid large and stupid detailed spider pictures!

My boyfriend comes over later in the week and we (I helped, bonus points to me after everything I went through. I'm high fiving myself again, by the way) carefully search through the closet until we find the creature who was super not dead, by the way. It probably loved it's special little vinegar bath!

The good news: The spider(s) are history.

The bad news: I'm probably more traumatized now than I was before. It's time to move to outer space. Please tell me spiders can't live in space, otherwise there's no hope for me.

The morale of the story: It's good to face your fears, but only when you have backup and some serious weaponry available. Maybe a sword, some fire.

Definitely not vinegar.

Image 1 via FunkyJunk
Image 3 via College Humor

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