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Arachnophobia.

For those of you who don’t know (and really, unless you’ve stumbled on this randomly, if you’re a friend or a family member you know), I have severe arachnophobia. Spiders make me scream, cry, and run away in fear…even just looking at photos of spiders can cause me to hyperventilate. It all started when I was in high school, at least as far as I can tell. In the same summer, my friend Beth and I found what everyone assumes was a Black Widow Spider while on a trip to Maine, and then a few weeks later when I was away at camp in North Carolina, I woke up from an afternoon nap to have a spider crawling up my arm. I’m sure I probably didn’t like spiders when I was younger, either, but my first real memories of being truly afraid of them was when I was around age 14.

This evening, Tim and I were out in the garden taking some pictures, and I happened to look over at what we now call “my tree” because I dug out all the junk and weeds around the bottom of the lilac and planted some flowers, herbs, and vegetables. I spotted what looked like a ball of something very tiny. I thought it might have been a spider’s web and the spider might have caught a lot of tiny bugs or something, so I asked Tim to get rid of it (fear of spiders = not wanting them around “my tree” because then I wouldn’t be able to even pull weeds there). Uhm. He tried to touch it and about a hundred (Tim will probably say it was less) teeny tiny spiders started to move. A momma spider LAID AN EGG in my garden and the damn thing hatched.

Fortunately, Tim was able to yank up the plant it had formed on (it was only an offshoot of the lilac) and tossed it in the green refuse bin….but now all I can think about is those little spiders and how some of them might still be in my garden, building webs in my flower beds and even possibly crawling into the house.

Sometimes, I really hate my fear. And, it’s stupid because everyone tells me that there are no poisonous spiders in the UK…but I still am scared of them. We bought an electronic “spider repeller”, and while it’s kept away the bulk of the spiders, we still get some…that Tim always has to catch and release outside.

Maybe I’ll be able to sleep at some point tonight….or maybe the thought of the spiders will keep me up all night.

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