We all have fears. Some of them big, some of them small. Some of them real, some of them imaginary. Some of them tangible and present, others intangible and from our past or in the future.
Everyone is afraid of something.
Today, dear readers, I faced one of my most crippling fears:
I have never really liked bugs very much. In fact, my mother would love to tell anyone who will listen about how when I was a little girl I wouldn’t go outside because “the bugs were staring at me”.
For clarification, I still think they see me, but perhaps they don’t stare as much as they used to.
Living in the country, being afraid of bugs just doesn’t make sense. We get stink bugs twice a year, ticks from March/April until nearly October, and flies love inhabiting our living room ceiling in the hot summer months.
I don’t like any of the aforementioned bugs, but not in the way I dislike wasps. Wasps are a different breed. They are like bumblebees on steroids. The Arnold Swarzenegger of bumblebees, if you will. They are faster and can sting over and over and over again. And they don’t like to be bothered.
On rare occasion we find one of these nasty guys in our house. Usually my husband takes care of this. That was pretty much our agreement upon marriage: he would dispose of any and all bugs in the home, and I would keep him supplied with homemade bread. Not a bad deal, if you think about it.
Anyway, this evening my husband is working, and I had to put the girls down by myself. After dinner I sent them into their bedroom to grab pajamas and get ready to get into the bathtub. Madeline told me there was a fly in their room.
A fly? In March? Odd.
I peek in to find a wasp crawling on her bedspread.
I think my heart jumped through my nostrils.
I herded the girls out quickly and got them into the bathtub, hoping to ignore our potentially violent visitor.
I kept peeking back into the room to see if the wasp found his way out the way he had found his way in. I had no such luck. He flew around a bit, but kept stopping to rest in the room. After I couldn’t keep the girls in the bath any longer I moved them into our bedroom for safety.
With my husband distracting the girls via telephone in another room, I was alone with the wasp. I was armed with a few things that I thought would help in battle: a fly swatter, a shoe, and a spray bottle filled with a mixture of dish soap and water.
(The dish soap and water was something I found on an online forum. The user said it would kill the wasp, but I wasn’t going to risk not having back up.)
After at least 30 minutes of hyperventilating, asking my husband for more and more moral support, I sprayed the wasp with the solution.
As predicted, the wasp dropped to the ground, still alive, but preening his wings. I took that opportunity to hit him over and over again with my shoe. Then sprayed him with more soap and water. Then hit him with my shoe some more.
Then sprayed him again, for good measure.
In the end, the wasp was in two, and the rug in my girls room is very clean.
After wrapping up the wasp in some paper towel and disposing of him I couldn’t get over the sense of pride and strength I felt that, with lots of prayer, I overcame my fear of nearly deadly stinging insects.
At least for one evening.