I need a laundry fairy. Plain and simple; I never seem to get to the bottom of a pile. It’s Saturday, early afternoon and I’m grabbing towels from the corner of my teenage daughter Caelin’s room with complete intentions of tossing a load in the wash before I run out for a luncheon.
Imagine this. Walking down the hallway with a load of laundry in your arms and suddenly, with shockingly quick agility, a furry grey face pokes its head out of the top of the pile and jumps. And YES, right NEAR your face! “F*&#%!!!!” OMG. Freak OUT is my first instinct. Hello, I don’t even pretend to be calm.
I’m really not sure in what order this all happened; my blood curdling screams, throwing of the laundry, jumping in the air and peeing my pants (yes… I admit it) doing the high step and continuing my scream while the horrific grey mouse ran full speed into teenage son Brock’s door. The little monster flew backwards and stunned itself. No he didn’t kill himself, but he lay there long enough for me to sprint to the kitchen, screaming the whole time, grab a tupperware bowl on the counter and trap it!
“Crap, crap, crap!!!!” (I think we all know that’s not exactly what I said.) Now this whole time I’m still screaming and carrying on and no one in my house has bothered to come to my rescue. Thank God I’m not being murdered out here. Seriously… where the heck is my family? Oh wait, yes, Dan is out of town of course, and the kids are in the other room watching TV! HELLO…YOUR MOTHER could be DYING out here!! So finallllly the two teenagers emerge from the back room to find out what the ruckus is about. I am still yelling out loud, I guess to myself, and trying to figure out a plan. Obviously if there is one mouse, it only makes sense that there must be more… oh my gosh, there are probably hundreds… we may need to burn the house down and start over. Ok, I am sure there are people I could hire to kill the little buggers and rid them of my home, but who can think clearly when they were nearly mauled by a rabid, beady eyed creature?? Now that I think about it, I’m sure it was laying in wait to catch me off guard and attack! Seriously, my heart is beating out of my chest!
Both kids come out confused, and look at me like I’ve lost my mind, as it’s obvious I am in full distress and seem to be repeating myself in a crazy ranting type manner. So Brock saunters over to see what I clearly cannot verbalize, looks at the varmint and is curiously not understanding my panic. He claps me on the back gives me a fabulous smile, and with excitement in his voice says, “Great job, mom! I was throwing knives at him this morning and you caught him.”
Ok, I’m sorry… but, “WHAT!!!???”
“Oh, well I was making breakfast earlier and he ran across the kitchen. I took out my throwing knives, but missed.” He smiles again like this is common morning practice and slaps me on the back again, gives me a thumbs up as he begins to retreat back to the TV room. OH HECK NO. So Caelin, yes, my sweet girl jumps in and is now yelling at her brother. Finally. Someone with common sense. But as I slowly interpret what she’s yelling about, I realize she is somehow aware of this mouse’s presence and is horrified we are trying to kill it!
Now this is way out of control, I’m trying to digest what she’s saying and she cannot possibly be defending the life of this intruder. “MOM” she screams, “Matilda is going to need therapy if you keep freaking out! You need to chill. And I can’t believe you aren’t yelling at Brock for throwing knives in the house!” Whoa, wait… who the HECK is Matilda, and why are we not figuring out a way to rid the house of the monster under the bowl?? And WHY oh WHY is she now talking to it in a soothing voice?
“Caelin!! You cannot possibly name this disease carrying, slippery tailed, nasty creature. It’s outta here!”
“Wait!” she pleads “I’ve been doing a science experiment to see if I could train a wild mouse. Her name is Matilda and she likes chips and candy.” I’m not sure my brain can handle this.
“Oh heck to the NO! Let me explain this to you and let me be crystal clear,” I screech. “NO mice, rats or anything looking like them are allowed in this house! I don’t even want to go into the many details of how they spread disease and everything else… seriously, have you lost your mind?! What are you freaking thinking??? Get it out of here, and take it way, far away from our house!”
I think I sound pretty clear, then Brock chimes in, “Can I shoot him?”
“NO” we both yell in unison. Good grief what did I raise here? I have got to get control.
“Ok”, I finally come up with a plan, “get something under it and take it across the street to the gutter and drop it in there. I’m sure she’ll be super happy and we don’t have to kill her.”
“Mom” Brock says soothingly and I’m pretty sure it is also a bit patronizing, “You really need to do this yourself. Seriously, Dad is out of town and I’ll be heading to college soon. You do know you are bigger than this mouse right? Just scoop it up and toss it out.”
“Have you lost your mind, son? This is your job! This is WHY I had you!!” How can he not understand my logic?
“Ok, fine.. I’ll do it with you.” he says
Ugh… grrrrr… the slow realization that he may be right is bouncing around in my brain and I finally agree. “OK, but I swear on all things holy… if you throw this thing at me or it touches me, you are sleeping outside till you leave for college”.
Now, this freaking mouse is no longer stunned, is running around frantically trying to escape this dome trap, and my heart beat picks up as I get closer and slide a piece of paper under it. Ok, ok, there we go. Done, whew, part one completed. Now as I slip my hand under the paper a small gap appears and the mouse sprints to the escape route. “CRAP!” I scream loud enough for the neighbors to hear, jump five feet in the air and start hitting Brock.
Thank the good Lord it didn’t escape, but my helpful son and daughter are now on the ground rolling around on the floor in hysterics laughing at me. Not cool. Seriously. I want new children.
Now, I’m pissed. I can do this. “Ok, Matilda… knock it the heck off and quit freaking me out.” I’m pretty sure talking to her will calm her down. Yeah, well it was worth a try.
“Seriously, Brock… get off the floor and help me out. I am not laughing and I think I have just aged another 10 years! You are responsible for my early death when it happens, just so you know.”
“Ok, ok… just let me catch my breath. Whew” he turns his back so I can’t see him laughing, but when he turns back around he can’t hide it, “But seriously mom…(another fit of laughter) that was hilarious!! You should have seen yourself!!! Ohhhhh that was sooooo funnnny” and then Caelin chimes in as she’s still rolling around grabbing at her sides. “Oh my gosh mom, that was the funniest thing. EVER. Ahhahahahhah…. Oh I can’t help it… sorry, but that was hysterical! Ohhh my sides hurt!”
Well, I for one am not laughing, and I’m pretty sure I’ve wet my pants twice now . I storm out of the hallway to my bedroom to change. I come back, the mouse is still running in circles in the tupperware scared to death. The kids are sitting down laughing their heads off, reliving the past 15 minutes and sharing their rendition of how I screamed, jumped and danced around like a maniac. Nice.
“You two listen to me”, I say in my most serious and annoyed mother voice, ” I am leaving for the luncheon I am now late for, and when I return, this mouse better be dead or living somewhere far, far away. I. Am. Not. Kidding.” With that I turn on my heel and head out…. to have a large glass of wine… or ten.
Dear God, please let Matilda spread the word that our house is dangerous place full of throwing knives and tupperware death traps… and that none of her friends or relatives should come here to snack on chips and candy.