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Mother Truckin' Ants
Ryo-oki
bikil
When we moved into our house last May, there were a few ants here and there. I thought we had perhaps brought them with us since we had a few ants in our old house. At the time, I thought nothing of it. We unpacked (um, not all the way tho, that never happens right?) and settled in. Six months went by, then, they started appearing more and more in the kitchen. I think I first realized we had a problem when I picked up the honey and it was literally COVERED with ants. I was freaked out and chucked the bottle away from me, fully willied.

They got worse, if anyone dropped a tiny drop of juice, or left out anything with sugar in it, it would get surrounded by their little black bodies ringed around the sugary item like they were having a creepy little ant conference. Then there were the trails. Ants leave some kind of chemical trail behind them when they find a food source, and you suddenly have this ant highway, ants trooping back and forth busily absconding with your sugary shit endlessly, mindlessly.

We did battle. And...
we lost.

We tried traps we bought from the store, wiping everything down w/ bleach, plugging up holes we found, calling out the exterminator to spray TWICE. We've tried eco ant killer, and not so eco ant killer, and they are still fucking trooping through our house. We put almost every bit of food we have in a bin, locked it away from them, and they turned to the cat food.

A few weeks ago, I started thinking about why this ant invasion made me so fucking ANGRY, full of RAGE. I felt tense all the time, I had ants marching through my dreams, creeping me out asleep or awake. And I finally figured it out. I can't control it. I can't make it go away, I can't make them stop. No matter what I've done or anyone in the house has done, we can't make them leave us alone. I am completely powerless.

One day I had an ephiphany. I made the connection back to when I was two and three, feeling powerless because I had no control when my grandfather would sexually abuse me. I couldn't get him to stop, or to leave me alone, and I couldn't tell anyone, couldn't do anything about it. I was completely powerless.

With this new insight, I scanned back through my life and realized that any time I get in a situation where I feel powerless, I do everything I can to wrest back that control. Feeling powerless is scary, when you're powerless, scary people do scary things to you, and no one can save you.

The ants still bother me, they still make me grumpy, but I no longer feel RAGE about it. I know they aren't my grandfather. At least I've taken that power away from them. I know they are just doing their little six-legged instinctual job and that in a clash of human and bug, the bug usually wins.

And, I've been working on letting go of feeling like I always have to be in control. Hell, I'm a mother of a toddler, I haven't had control for a long time! It's kind of funny where your brain leads you sometimes, to have such a revelation about something so simple as an ant. But, I'm glad it does, and I'm glad I have the big beautiful brain that I do, so I can try to figure out a new plan to get those motherfuckin' ants to finally leave us alone!

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The universe and my wonderful therapist! Hee!

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