Hello, and welcome to my blog post about spiders and the fear of them.
I am writing to you from an insect tent in our living room.
We recently moved into a house in Richmond which I am super happy about. Great area, great schools, and really cute 200+ year old house. I can’t believe we are actually here!
But one thing that sobers me as I delight in the beauty and charm of our surroundings is Spiders.
I chose not to research the types of snakes, insects and spiders present in London before we moved because I wanted to spare myself the anxiety of knowing what to expect. And for our first two months here in clean temporary housing, all was well. I think I saw a tiny fly once. No problem.
We moved last Thursday. It has been crazy. Like a few 6 hour trips to IKEA via 3 or 4 trains with the kids crazy. But we are getting settled and I am aggressively trying to unpack and set-up shop for the next two years.
So for the first few days of unpacking, I saw no spiders despite the seriously gigantic holes in the floor. The floors are charming, but also more sieve than floor in some spots…a sieve meant to withhold bigger things like …I don’t know… rats, but totally designed to let through gigantic spiders. yay 😦
Two days ago, Luke casually mentioned that he found a spider in our bed. That’s cool, I’m just going to do some quick (4 hours) research on how to get rid of spiders. A sleepless night ensued due to the worry that spiders were going to crawl on me.
Yesterday, I found another spider. Today, I found 4.
I feel it relevant to mention that this place was professionally cleaned before we moved-in. Also that I meticulously vacuumed today and sprayed the only deterrent I could find locally all over the house. It is mint oil 😦 Doesn’t pack the punch (death) I was hoping for, but it’s something.
So I kid you not, tonight, I am sleeping in a spider-proof tent that I packed in our luggage for our journey to London. I know that sounds crazy. Laying here while the rest of my family sleeps completely unprotected from said 8-legged creatures does sound a bit…ridiculous.
Luke helped me set-up the tent, and is putting up with my phobia because as he puts it, “therapy is expensive.”
And by the way, do you know what the treatment is for arachnophobia?
“Exposure” …as in:
Therapist: Hi Jessica, welcome to our therapy session where I will show you pictures of spiders and then bring real ones into the room for you to enjoy. I am certain this will help.
Me: I don’t like spiders.
Therapist: I know, but if you’ll just look at them and let them crawl all over you I’m sure this will change.
...and then later….
Friend: Hey, what are you up to today?
Me: Nothing much, just got done with a therapy session to help me not be afraid of spiders.
Friend: Spiders are gross!
Me: I know, but apparently if you look at them and let them crawl on you in a “therapy context”, they’re not gross or creepy anymore.
Friend: You’re paid for this?
But seriously, if you knew there were big, bulky, potentially poisonous (delivery man informed me of this nice fact today) spiders in your house, could you sleep?
Also, if you think I am strange for feeling this way, let me ask you something:
What creature would you feel comfortable with crawling all over you at night? My guess is cat or dog, not spider.
So friends, tonight I am sleeping in my spider-proof tent. And tomorrow, I will call the pest control people because therapy is expensive, pest control is cheaper, and sleeping by yourself in a tent in the living room is not a good long-term solution. But for tonight…I will actually sleep 😉