Thursday, April 30, 2009

a really long post about arachnophobia

I have a penchant for freaking myself out. And I did it again this morning, while taking a nice hot shower. My mind wandered to thoughts of how horrible it would be to open my eyes and see a spider! A perverted, creepy shower spider. The worst kind. The kind that wait until you are naked and wet to crawl into your shower, at which point you are quite helpless what with all the nakedness and wetness. After thinking this thought, I opened my eyes to reassure myself that there was, indeed, no shower spider..only to see one. Yes! Crawling on the curtain, one nasty appendage holding onto the metal ring as if to ready itself for pouncing, was the dreaded spider. Once a shower spider is spotted, my shower is basically ruined. I cannot relax and enjoy the water running down my neck, for fear that a spider party has begun somewhere on my body. Every little tickle I feel is likely the fangs of the water loving spiders sinking into my flesh. I cannot close my eyes because I have to keep one eye on the shower spider, to make sure it has not moved or changed positions. And I cannot kill the spider until I am fully clothed and dry, because I don't want it touching my skin, or jumping onto me, or having the tissues I try to trap it in dissinigrate under my wet hands. This is a true phobia people.

I am not a girly girl. I don't mind snakes - I would happily hold most kinds of them. I can gut a fish when necessary - no problem. Bodily! I am a nurse. But spiders are repulsive. I used to trap them under cups - so Dave could dispose of them when he got home. But with kids, an upside down glass on the floor will not remain undisturbed all day, so I have had to man up. This is my basic technique, after years of experience and sleepless nights.

I get a big handful of tissue, sneak up on the unsuspecting arthropod, quickly try to lift it off the floor or the wall, squish it with a vengence between my fingers, hold it as far away from my body as possible, run frantically while screaming into the bathroom, drop a few swears, squish it again with both hands to ensure a horrible, painful but complete death, flush it and the tissue down the toilet, and then close the lid (so it won't escape my local septic system). I will not throw a squished spider in the garbage - oh no. That is for crazy people like sky divers and democrats. An allegedly dead spider that has been squished between your tissue holding fingers may have simply been cushioned too much by all the Charmin, the internal organs may not have exploded under the pressure you applied, and if thrown in the garbage could crawl out (somewhat reminicent of the well scene from "The Ring") and come to find you for revenge. The toilet technique ensures a second manner of death by drowning and thus eliminates any chance of the spider escaping. I have put a lot of thought into this.

A few times, when feeling brave and very angry. I have stepped out of the shower, rerouted the water and drowned the shower spider, watched it circle the drain until it disappears and then finally resumed my routine. But this technique is unsettling and I always worry the spider will resurface from the drain, only to kill me and my family.

I know I sound crazy (but after my Enrichment meeting presentation on organization that's pretty much the concensus). But as a child I had a horrible experience with a spider that scarred me for life.

This all went down on a rainy Saturday afternoon in my parents garage. I was about 13 years old. I had gone in the empty garage to play tennis against the closed garage door. After several minutes, the tennis ball bounced into a 5 gallon bucket my Dad had sitting on the garage floor. I walked over, reached in the bucket, picked up the ball and walked over to the middle of the floor for my next hit. When I turned the ball over to hit it against my racket I was shocked to see the hugest, most disgusting, hairy, evil spider I had ever seen. It was rust colored and furry and nasty in every way. It was practically a mammal. This spider was big enough that it's body was curved around the shape of the ball and it's legs were millimeters from touching my fingers in every direction. When I say it was big, I mean it was huge. It had a neck. And if you think spiders don't have necks it's because you haven't seen this one. I don't know how it came to live in my Dad's garage. It may have escaped the Brazilian rain forest and smuggled itself into the country in a crate of delicious produce. I'm not sure, but there we were, the spider and me.

I looked at it, it looked at me. I didn't dare let go of the ball and I certainly couldn't hold it any longer. About 3 seconds of silence followed. My eyes were open wide and dilated as my survival instincts kicked in. My heart pounded and my mind tried frantically to reconcile how I could survive this encounter. As I reluctantly resolved myself to the course of action my brain had insisted on, a scream came out of my mouth that pierced through the darkened garage. I walked over to the wall, looked in the other direction and held my extended arm to my side. Closing my eyes, I pushed that tennis ball as hard as I could against the wall, screaming intensely. I felt the heinous creature give under the pressure my arm exerted, not once, but twice. When I finally opened my eyes and looked in the direction of the ball, I could see those disgusting, stringy, hairy legs wriggeling under the ball that was still in my hand. A foul, thick ooze seeped down the sheetrock and I knew the beast was dead! I killed the beast!

This experience gave me nightmares for years. I would get out of bed, if the thought happened to cross my mind, and strip all the bedding off my bed, checking it for spiders, before I could sleep. The worst part was that I sometimes found one, and then my crazy impressions were confirmed for the next several nights, and I would go through the same routine again and again.
And, even now, if I happen to wake up with a bite somewhere on my body, I have to imagine some creepy spider, crawling around on me as I slept until finally deciding on a nice spot of flesh to chew on. The thought makes me shiver.

Even the loved book "Charlotte's Web" could not remove the stigma surrounding spiders in my mind. The only thing Charlotte should have written on the side of that barn in her disgusting web was "Fumigate me".

So, these are some of the reasons why, at least in my mind, spiders are foul. And shower spiders are just unforgivable. I did the old "squish and flush" on the spider from this morning. I am proud to say I am getting a little braver with every kill. I'm a survivor! Wow, I had a lot to say about that.

Thursday, April 9, 2009

i'm not even mad...that's amazing...

Edison kills me. He finds "treasures" around the house everyday - some are the same as the day before, some are new. When he takes his nap he insists on holding all of his favorite stuff. It is quite a feat. I'm so happy to see our commercialism is rubbing off on our kids. You can never have to much of a good thing - we are driving this lesson home daily. Here he is with his "hey-copta", his Pirate Pete book, his "dink oh wadda", and "Gugee" (the second). As you can see - these objects must be being held in some secure way, otherwise, a big brother may wake up first and take one of the said "treasures" away. You have to look closely, but he was careful to hold Gugee's tail tightly between his knees so his little guy was thoroughly secured. He is a genius and I love this.

Another day (same outfit, different sippy cup)...the helicopter lost out to a bouncy ball. Check out the hair. He always looks crazy after a nap.

I have been lucky enough to be one of Eddie's treasures on occassion. Sometimes when I tuck him in bed he will say "Stay here!". When I lay down by him, Eddie will hold on to my neck with both his little arms, and stick his foot over my legs to hold me in place. It's an honor.

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

i'm a jerk

I know I am evil, but I am so over Scott on American Idol. Is he more talented than I and most of the people in this world? Immensely. Is the fact that he is legally blind and overcome physical challenges to excel inspiring? Absolutely. Would I prefer he wear sunglasses like Ray Charles and Stevie Wonder? Definitely. Should he still be on American Idol? No. Sorry. Let's not patronize this smart, nice guy who deserves props for making it so far but now deserves the boot. Come on, people. I'm only comparing him to the talented people left in the show and they are just better. Most everyone, anyway. Scott is to American Idol as Ron is to The Biggest Loser and the little stunt men are to the Amazing Race. Enough already. I am a reality TV junkie.

Monday, April 6, 2009

how do i love thee? Let me count the ways....

No this post is not about Dave. I do love him. But, more pressing to discuss, at the moment, is the fact that I love me some iPod. That's right. My iPod makes me happy, and the love just keeps growing. I don't need a fancy new iPod, unlike Dave who has gone through more iPods in the last 5 years than haircuts. I like my little nano. And I love my playlists. I have a playlist for driving through Price canyon, another one for cleaning, one for working out (it's rarely used) and one for when I'm ticked off and need to vent vicariously through people more angry and creative than myself.

In moving to our new house, my iPod was separated from it's headphones, which were separated from the USB cable, which was separated from my iTunes library on my computer that took a long time to get set up. Now, all the pieces of my iPod have come together, and it is a beautiful thing. I didn't realize how much I missed them all. So here's to good tunes, cool electronics and something to listen to besides the TV. Cheers!

copayments aplenty

I have been a blogging no show for the last few weeks and there are several important reasons - namely Jacob, Edison and Saren. They have all been sick with RSV - you've probably heard of it - the dreaded "Really S#@%!y Virus". Jacob was miserable for a week or so but is now fine. Eddie ended up with pneumonia and Saren ended up in the hospital for a few days. She came home on oxygen but now we are pretty healthy other than a few remaining breathing treatments a day and the last few doses of Eddie's antibiotic. Phewww! Here are some sad pictures to remember the misery. Yeah for living in America where we have hospitals, even if the closest one is Castleview.