I mentioned in an earlier post that in my childhood I attempted to conquer any fears/phobias that I had.
One that I seemed to have utter fail on is known to me now as “arachnophobia”. I have no explanations for it. My father has always loved them, my mother never showed fear of them…My father in fact took every effort to teach us that they were are friends. Creatures of beauty. Protectors of his beloved garden…(along with the snakes). I have no fear of snakes…and yet seeing multiple appendages , especially eight,
makes my knees weak, sweat beads form on my forehead, and nausea strikes my stomach.
I remember the horrid feeling of guilt, that i “hated” spiders. And I could not explain why. Bigotry? irrational fear? yes…but WHY? I had read Charlotte’s Web and realized how lovely and empathetic Charlotte was, but there was no hope for me. I even had a dream, of how horrid i was. The Dream:
My father and I were walking to church in my dream. He was holding my hand. We were singing. We passed by a spider. I looked away. My father invited the spider to church with us. It seemed excited and said YES! I would love to come, but how will I keep up with you? I had a horrid evil sinister thought. I offered Mr Spider to ride in my shoe, thinking i might…squish it when i walked. The spider said, “why thank you!” and hopped in to my proffered foot. when I attempted the squish, he jumped out, informing my father what I had attempted. To my fathers grave disappointment. And my shame/guilt. And then the spider climbed up to ride on my shoulder instead. But even in my guilt, I could not shake the ick i felt.
The phobia continued (and grew) as I grew. Though my sons have helped my “jump/scream/shock” reaction by placing “fake” spiders in various places throughout the house, (laundry, bed, sink, dishwasher, computer, etc) For now I nearly expect them, though I fear that when I reach down to make sure it is a fake one, it will move….and life will be over…
I still cannot explain this irrational fear. I have never been bit, and know that there are very few in my area that could even hurt me…
I have often wondered if some phobias could be instilled, or leftover from some evolutionary “stuff” genetically…Don’t know that there is any scientific evidence of that though.
So anyone who knows me personally, knows my Achilles heel is…the eight legged beast. (no matter how small) And I was not surprised in the least to have this picture posted to my facebook. It was to be expected. Thank goodness for snopes….sigh.