Confession: I May Be An Overreactor. My sister, too. (Alternate title: What would YOU have done if this was in YOUR house?)

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My sister wasn’t hurting anybody. She was just sitting there eating her pizza on her couch. And watching some TV. I’m sure it was something on Bravo. She just loooooves Bravo. She was minding her own business and watching something on Bravo. Or HGTV. One of those two. Minding her own business and watching Bravo or HGTV. It could have been Food Network. Minding her own business and watching Food Network or Bravo or HGTV. Or perhaps it was…

“AAAAAAAAAHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!”

My brother-in-law heard my sister scream and came rushing down the stairs.

“What? What? What’s wrong?!??”

“Looklooklooklooklooklooklook!!!!!!!” My sister frantically pointed up toward the ceiling with her arms flailing all around in her full-on freaked-out mode.

“Oh, Lisa!”

“What? Get it!!!!”

“I thought you were bleeding to death down here. I can’t believe you screamed like that over THAT!”

“ARE YOU KIDDING ME???? It’s a BAT! A BAT! There is a BAT in our LIVING ROOM.”

Not the same bat, but, lawduhmercy, that thing is ugly. Source

It wasn’t in the living room long, though. Before they were able to stick that thing into a headlock, it had flown upstairs into their game room. My brother-in-law chased behind it and decided to turn on the ceiling fan in the hopes that the flying blood-sucking mammal would crash into the blades and fall to the ground.

And that’s what happened.

I still don’t know if that bat was alive or not when he sailed face first into the carpet. I need to remember to ask my brother-in-law about that. I just know that the bat problem had been taken care of for the time being.

Except when I told my sister that the pest control people I had pestered about sponsoring our neighborhood swim team told me that bats usually travel in pairs. (I had to pretend I had another goal for coming into their establishment other than just wanting them to cough up some dollah bills.) The bats-traveling-in-pairs thing got her all freaked out over again.  Well, that, and the fact that there is bat residue in her house.

Bat particles.

My sister is one of those REALLY clean people. I feel like I’m a clean person, but my sister is REALLY CLEAN. If she were fresh out of the shower but then had to take the trash out, she’d want to take a shower again. For her to have bat atoms in her house is a huge deal.

So, this is how it’s been for the last week:

“Kelley, can you believe there was a BAT IN MY HOUSE?”

*Brother-in-law in the background* “Would you stop it, already? The bat is out of the house. We have rid our house of the bat. The bat area has been cleaned.”

“A bat, Kelley,” She’ll continue. “A bat.”

I always agree with her, because the first person I’m calling if a bat finds a key to this house is her. Well, that’s after I’ve yelled and flailed around my own house for a bit.

This bat business prompted a conversation between my sister and me about the level of sympathy our husbands have for us when something super really bad happens like bats flying into ceiling fans in your own house when you were minding your own business while watching HGTV. (Or was it Bravo?) Her husband felt that her level of yelling was only appropriate for profuse bleeding. I am thinking he should have thought her reaction should have gone more like this one:

“Oh, dear me. Would you look at that? A bat in my own house. Shoo, bat. Shoo. Honey? Oh, honey! When you get a chance, could you see if you could get this nuisance out of the house? I’m trying to watch the Food Network and this constant flapping of this bat’s wings are sort of bothering me. No rush, though.”

I only feel like I am at liberty to tease them about this situation because my husband would have had the same reaction as my brother-in-law if he had found me yelling like crazy over a bat in the living room. I know this because I know how my husband reacts when I hurt my toe. If I have nailed the sucker into the side of some furniture, for example, and fall down in agony, the scenario would likely play out like this:

“OUCH!!! OUCH!!” *crashes down to the ground*

“What’s wrong??”

“I hurt my toe!” *rolls from side to side on her back while clutching her foot*

“You hurt your toe?? I thought you broke your leg or something!”

“I can’t hurt my toe and get some sympathy? Why does it always have to be catastrophic? Is the only way I’m getting a ‘Are you okay? What can I do to help?’ outta you is if I come through here with a 2 x 4 sticking out of my right ear?”

(I’m fairly confident he’d give me a pat on the head and a “there, there” if I had a 2 x 4 sticking out of my ear. Possibly.)

When he says things like, “I thought you broke your leg!”, he pretty much knows I didn’t break my leg. That is his way of saying that my outburst doesn’t match my pain level and so, therefore, does not require much sympathy.

“But, I hurt my toe!”

“You aren’t even crying, Kelley.”

“But, I hurt it!”

“Not crying.”

“Okay, I’m better now.”

I guess he sort of has a point. I do recover pretty quickly. And I can be a little dramatic. I guess my sister can be that way, too. We all react to pain and bats in the house in our own individual ways, though, and that’s our God-given right, dingdangit.

We know our husbands care about us. Of course, they do. Once when we were first married, and before my husband became desensitized to my pain reactions, I had heartburn that made me feel like I was having a heart attack. I clutched my chest and slid down the bathroom wall. (I’ve seen a lot of movies.) I do remember him dropping everything and running over to me with a worried look on his face exclaiming, “Kelley! Kelley! Are you alright??”. I tuck that little scenario in the back of my head when he doesn’t run to get a stretcher for me after I hurt my toe.

Seriously, though, if my sister or I see a bat just after we hurt our toes, we are going to need a stretcher. We might as well stock up on a couple of those right now, just in case.

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