tick phobia

As I prepared to go to bed last night, I carelessly tossed my cell phone and now ubiquitous wrist brace down on the mattress while I rummaged for my night time pills in the bedside stand.  And something went -ping-scurrryscurryscurry off the bed, onto the floor, and under the night stand.

BUG!  And me barefoot and in a sundress.  See, this is why I hate that summertime makes me dress like a carefree and helpless little girl.  I am NOT carefree and being scantily clad makes me feel like I am vulnerable in ways I’d rather not be.  Yeah, I know, this sounds like your run of the mill body dysmorphic disorder…And admittedly I do think my feet look like large bony pale monkey feet, but this state of undress-distress is more conditioned by wanting to be contained and safe than by wanting to not show my body.  I’m quite happy in a floor length figure hugging dress, providing I can wear combat boots to do things like STOMP ON BUGS that invade my space.

My husband came into the room a short time later to find me sitting uneasily on the bed, legs pulled up under me, cell phone and charger in hand.  In response to his quizzical look, I whined “I wanted to charge my phone but I need to plug in the charger back there” (gesturing to the nightstand) “and a big bug just ran off the bed and under it!”  “What kind of bug?” my husband asked.  “Big, black, I dunno, it had legs.”  “Well I should hope so.  It would be more alarming if it didn’t.”  “Ugh, and there’s another bug up there on the ceiling.” I pointed to a little bug that was working its way in and out of the ceiling tiles in the corner just past the window and my side of the bed.  My take on bugs is if they invade my space and they are over a certain size and speed, they get obliterated.  I don’t want to have to concern myself that they will come at me, and so I take preemptive steps, which usually culminate in my throwing the largest book I can find on them then jumping on that and stomping while muttering “die die die fucking die”.  A couple of my employees have witnessed this.  It is now termed the “die bug die dance”.

My husband and I debated the merits of moving the nightstand and looking for the leggy bug.  My husband offered to do it.  I was disgusted with myself for being so whiny and helpless so I said  “No, I don’t want you to do it.  I don’t want to do it and I’m certainly not going to ask you to do something I won’t do.”  He satisfied himself by peering under the nightstand with the flashlight.  “I don’t see anything,” he announced.  So off to bed we went.

At some point, I realized that it wasn’t as cool as it should be with the air conditioner running.  Hm.  I got up.  I pulled back the curtain at the window next to my side of the bed.  Ah.  The window was open.  Crap.  Well, now I know where the bugs came from.  I closed it and went back to bed.  But…if those bugs got in, others may have.  We just moved to tick central.  I avoid being outside as a rule now, I don’t walk on grass, I try to avoid walking under trees.  I do not want to be another tick buffet.  And so into my very sleepy head scurried fears that a tick may have gotten in the window.  A deer tick certainly wasn’t as big as the black leggy fucker who was currently planning his 2:00 AM assault on my pillow from under the nightstand.

No sleep for Dyspatient last night.  Up at 1:30 AM to have a cigarette and read.  Then back to my scary bed where I jumped at every stray tickle on my skin and pulled the covers up tight despite the humidity.


I’d consider this evidence of a general anxiety issue except that I have such a good reason to be worried about ticks and tick bites.  Still, while the reasoning is sound I think the behavior is a bit aberrant.  I chalk it up to experience plus my already hyper threat-attuned brain…now if only ticks were stompable and would just make themselves known rather than creeping around like the life wrecking disease riddled fuckers they are.

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