Everyone has those stories. Those stories you keep secretly hidden, only bringing them out at appropriate times, with the right people, or when it has been a safe amount of time you’re no longer terribly embarrassed.
Well…here’s one of those stories.
A few year’s ago, after years of having roommates, I found myself a new home owner with my own place. My sis, also had her own place in Branson, so we found ourselves often tossing a coin to see which house we wanted to stay at for the weekend. This particular weekend, her house won out.
I came in Sunday evening, exhausted from pretending to be a tourist for the weekend and crashed on the couch. As soon as my eyes closed, I heard a rumbling in the back bedroom. I instantly sat up, my brain spinning with am I going to fight, flight, or freeze.
Do I run to a neighbors and call the police? Can I even move? Do I lay here and pretend like I didn’t hear anything? Do I go check it out?
Which do I choose: fight, flight, or freeze?
Fight seemed to win out…kind of…we’ll just call it a frightened courage.
Remember, I was scared, but determined to check it out. I grabbed a lighter off the coffee table. Apparently, I was going to set my intruder on fire. Not my brightest moment.
With lighter in hand, I hesitantly made my way down the hallway. I was stealthy (I say now that it’s over and it makes me feel better about myself). The only sounds were the rumbling still going on and the extremely loud beating of my heart.
I mustered my courage and burst into the room to find … NOTHING!
Now, I begin reasoning with myself because I know I heard something and although I’m scared, I’m not irrational. As I try to reason what is happening, a thought comes to me, “maybe he’s in the closet!”
The beating of my heart increases again as I make my way to the closet. I flick the lighter on (that pains me a bit to admit), turn the knob, and jump strategically behind the door.
I peek my head courageously or hesitantly, however you prefer to view it, around the edge of the door and see nothing but dresses and shoes looking back at me.
But, I know I heard something. Again a realization comes to me, “maybe he’s under the bed.” It was in that moment I learned that courage and stupidity often run a close parallel and I was very close to that line as I “courageously” kneeled down, flicked the lighter out in front of me, and lifted the bed ruffle.
NOTHING! NOTHING! NOTHING!
But, that’s when it happened. The rumbling began again. With great fear, I slowly and quietly stood up thinking “this is it, this is the end, get your lighter ready.” As I stood up and faced what I was sure was going to be the strongest of foes, I was startled.
There was NOTHING staring me back at me.
That’s when I saw it. Over in the corner of the room, hidden discretely behind the dresser, was a Wal-Mart bag and setting confidently on top of it was my culprit, a bird.
My intruder that set my body, mind and emotions on an elaborate roller coaster ride was a small, non-intimidating creature that was gently prompted to fly back out the window the same way it came.