Vaulted ceilings are cool. They make a space feel bigger. They also give bugs lots of space to exist out of reach.
I blogged not long ago about phobias, specifically Deniphobia. Well, one of my other phobias is things-with-more-than-four-legs. The other day while I popped out to clip some herbs, a moth popped in. Jellybean and Buckley stalked him around the apartment, wishing their legs were ten feet longer.
I didn't. I was fine to let him live out his days in the upper reaches, especially if he kept to a different room than me at all times.
Well, tonight the moth broke our truce. I was about to wash my face, when who should decide to invade my space? He settled on the cupboard door and stared at me. It was a challenge, I could feel it.
Jellybean and Buckley wandered in to watch the showdown as I considered my options.
1) Spray bathroom cleaner at him. But I've learned that some things can fly a lot before the poison kicks in.
2) Hit him with a shoe. Things that are smashed can't fly. But they can also leave spots on the walls.
3) Move. Cede the bathroom and relocate to the office bathroom. Use only what makeup is floating in my purse and buy a new toothbrush. It could work, but who knew what that nasty little bug would do to my stuff while I wasn't there?
So, I got a kitten heel and prayed for strength, and swatted. Unfortunately, my phobia kicked in, so I totally pansied out on my swing. The moth, in an act of pure aggression, fluttered straight at me. I screeched like a bad brake, danced like I was seizing, and probably traumatized my cats for life.
Okay, maybe a slight overreaction. I could use the excuse that I've had a bug stuck in my hair before, which is true, but honestly I would have flipped anyway. I started a frantic search for the moth to verify it wasn't somehow clinging to my person, and found it belly up by the cats' water.
It was dead...or was it? I wanted to believe it, but I've seen too many movies to believe the bad guy dies the first time you kill him. I didn't want to touch the thing, so I thought maybe I'd get the boys to do the dirty work (not my finest pet owner moment.) I sprinkled food in their bowl and sure enough they came running. They saw the moth but instead of poking at it, they focused on their kibble. But it didn't move, even with two cats hovering, so I figured it was dead. I got a wad of paper roughly the size of my fist, and prepared to dispose of the body.
As soon as I brushed it, the moth flipped over and with a karate kid maneuver, charged at me again.
And I screamed again.
And the cats fled again.
I retrieved my shoe, let the Holy Spirit groan on my behalf, and flattened that sucker.
Is my phobia gone? No. But I will sleep tonight.
I'm grateful for shoes and their many uses, for neighbors who don't panic when they hear chaos through the walls, for screens and windows and pest control companies. And I'm grateful that the Lord is my strength in the big and the small. His eye is on the sparrow. Incidentally, sparrows eat bugs.