For most of the past week, The Electrician and I have relocated to the spare bedroom because the guest bed has a much firmer mattress, and we hoped it would help my knotted-up spine correct itself. Between the change in bed and the three treatments on my neck I suffered through, I am close to achieving a full range of motion once again. Hooray!
Sleeping downstairs really isn’t a step down from the master bedroom upstairs, even if the bed is smaller, because the guest bed is just as close to the basement bathroom as our regular bed is to the adjacent facilities. For a person with a bladder as small as mine, distance to the bathroom is critical.
Late Thursday night, I woke from a light sleep, and tripped over Sherman on my way to the bathroom in the dark. The switch for the light is outside the bathroom, and I managed to find it by knocking my elbow against the dresser, stubbing my toe on the doorframe, and approximating the distance between the two. Though all of it, The Electrician (and the dog) snored away in blissful ignorance.
Without my glasses, I’m at a serious disadvantage in navigating even simple tasks. Sure, there are folks out there with far worse vision than I have, and I am grateful for what I’ve got, even if it’s not ideal. I basically see shapes and colours when I’m not wearing what my driver’s license demands: “adequate lenses.” Getting out of bed in the middle of the night isn’t generally too hazardous, since no one moves my furniture or major fixtures between the time I fall asleep and wake up needing to pee. Staying in bed with a full bladder is far risker than making a quick trip to the toilet, even in the dark with partial vision.
From my perch on the surprisingly cold seat, I noticed a dark spot on the bathroom wall, right next to the doorframe. It was about the size of a golf ball, if golf balls were blackish. After washing my hands, I (foolishly) decided to investigate the large smudge while I dried my hands on the towel hanging on the back of the door. Because of my limited vision, further impaired by my drowsy state, I had to lean pretty close to carry out my inspection. Just as I got close enough to actually see what I was dealing with, the blotch waved at me with two of its eight legs.
Lounging on my bathroom wall, halfway between the door frame and the edge of the shower, was the biggest spider I have ever seen in the dollhouse. And I was seriously underdressed for battle with evil beasts.
Sherman rolled over when my shriek pierced the just-past-midnight peace. The Electrician continued to snore away. It’s reassuring to know they have my back if anything scary happens in the night around here. I tripped over the dog again in my rush back to the bed, and he actually got up to see what was going on. I leapt onto the bed like a child pretending the carpets are molten lava, sweating profusely and babbling like a maniac. My husband snorted in his sleep. When I grabbed his shoulder and shook him rather violently, he finally broke somewhat out of his dream.
“Sweetie, wake up. Wake up!” I pleaded.
“There’s a spider in the bathroom. A spider. A very big spider.”
“Huh?” Things were progressing. We were almost up to real words.
“Spider. Eight legs. Googly eyes. Bad attitude.”
“Huge, huge, gross spider,” I shuddered and fought my nausea. “I need you to kill it. Please.”
There is something about a damsel in distress that motivates even the sleepiest of men to save the day. My poor husband trudged to the bathroom, rubbing his eyes with one hand and scratching his belly with the other. I watched in terror as he tore off a square of Charmin, wondered if his life insurance policy was decent, and held my breath.
“It’s by the doorframe,” I whispered hoarsely.
“Sweetie, I don’t see a–” he began. “Oh wow.” Hearing him exclaim at the discovery of our invader made me feel a bit better, like perhaps I wasn’t overreacting too badly. He set the toilet paper on the counter, since it was clearly inadequate for the task before him, and strode cooly to the kitchen of our basement suite, where he grabbed a paper towel and prepared for battle.
In the end, killing the horrid arachnid in our bathroom required a violent palm smack at the wall with a paper towel, then a wild (yet manly) round of muffled applause when The Electrician checked the contents of the paper towel and found the spider still very much alive and very much belligerent. It was amazing how brave he could be in the middle of the night.
After the danger had been crushed into a spider-coloured smear and deposited in the garbage, my husband returned to bed and promptly returned to his deep sleep. I remained awake and quivering slightly. Two thoughts lingered at the front of my mind. First, did the spider have any friends who could seek revenge once we were both sleeping and vulnerable? Second, would I have been a terrible person if I asked my husband to wash his hands after the execution?
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