It's been a couple of years now since The Mister and I moved into our current house. Previously we lived in a 70 year old bungalo in the downtown area of Indianapolis. We now live further out in the 'burbs near a lovely park and reservoir. We have lots of trees and wildlife. And spiders. Lots and lots of spiders.
Now, before you spider lovers out there attack, I want you to know that I appreciate the spider for its role in the world. If I am outdoors and I see a spider, other than possibly shooing it away from my space, I leave it alone. I want spiders in my garden to keep out the other pests. Where I don't want spiders is in my home.
In our old house, which had been lived in by the same man for over 40 years, I NEVER saw a spider. I know that sounds crazy but it's true. I don't know, maybe we had some spider-eating snake that lived there. But, if we did, I never saw the snake, either. I was thinking, old house, lots of spiders and creepy things. I don't know if the guy before us just sprayed a lot of pesticides or what (we never did), but the bugs were not coming into that house.
Now we live in a brand new house and we are under constant attack. We see one at least once a day if not two or three times a day. You open the door to the bathroom and sit down on the toilet, there is one staring at you from under the sink. You start to run the bath water for the baby, one runs out from behind her tub toy holder. You think you are going to take the child out to play but one runs in the door when you open it and then goes to hide behind the play kitchen. They are mostly just wolf spiders, big and ugly but harmless, but I DO NOT want them in the house. So, I am sorry, but I have to kill the ones that come into the house. Mostly, I grab some paper towel and squish them as quickly and painlessly as I can (I do have a heart). Sometimes they are so freaking big I have to get out the vacuum to suck them up. Then I have to not vacuum for a week because I don't want to clean out the trap because what if they are not dead in there???
The worst one we ever saw, and I ask you to brace yourself, was a spider with babies on its back. Oh, no, I didn't know this existed, either, until one night when The Nugget was about 3 months old and we sat as a family during the late evening in our living room. She was resting quietly in her swing. The Mister and I were watching a movie. Suddenly, The Mister says, "What the hell is THAT?"
Now, to be fair, The Mister is known to trend a bit toward the dramatic. I did not initially even move from my cozy spot on the couch. Glancing around, I saw nothing. But as his eyes zeroed in, I felt the fear and panic rise as my eyes followed his to this HUGE shadow on the floor. A big, black shadow right near our fireplace which was just INCHES from our innocent baby girl.
At this point, chaos ensued. The Mister attempted the usual maneuver of grabbing a bunch of paper towels to squish the spider while I ran back and forth across the living room shouting, "Get it, get it, get it!" I had not yet realized that there were babies on the spider, I just thought it was really huge. Needless to say, when The Mister hit it with the paper towel, babies went everywhere! Ack!
Now it occurred to me to get the vacuum (this was the first time the vacuum trick had needed to be employed in our spider wars). While we both tried to squelch our cases of heebie jeebies, I threw the vacuum at The Mister who began chasing after what seemed like hundreds of babies. Fearing they had run into the fireplace, we turned that on and then, for good measure, we cleaned the entire house because we were totally freaked out. We then spent the rest of our evening alternately shivering and saying, "Ewwww".
All the while, The Nugget slept peacefully in her swing. One day when she is old enough to appreciate it I will Google the photo of "spider with babies on back" and she will know what we faced in order to protect her. The brave among you may choose to look it up now but, I warn you, it is not for the faint of heart.
Spiders, if you are reading this, I am sorry I have killed so many of your kind. I would prefer not to do it. I just want you to live outside and allow my family to live inside. Alone. And if you could please stop startling me every chance you get, that would be nice, too. Finally, if there is any way I can get reimbursed for all of the paper towel I have gone through trying to rid my house of your kind, I would love that because I use the good stuff and it's not cheap. But, you know, just the leaving alone thing would be great, too.