Of Mice and Women, Part 2

| 8/9/2010 8:54:11 AM

loadedmousetrapWhen we last left off, I’d positioned myself as some kind of eco-superwoman setting off to rid my home of furry little vermin. Well, things didn’t exactly go as planned. I’m sharing this because part of the promise of this series is to be honest with you and shed light on what my cherished meditation teacher S.N. Goenka defines as “the truth as it is, not as you want it to be.”

I killed the mouse.

Well, I didn’t kill anything. I managed to get others to do the dirty work. The day after I wrote my last post, I called my friend Eric and whined (just like I said I would) and then I called my friend Mary and whined some more. “Mary, I don’t know what to do! This isn’t what I had planned!” Of course, no one plans for a mouse. And no one also plans for friends to descend upon you like angels and make things better. Mary, her husband, Danny, and their son, Finn, came over and took care of me in the most extraordinary of ways. First, they brought me food (because once the mouse pooped on top of the stove it became off-limits for me). Then Mary helped me unpack (because, of course, now I was petrified that every single box I had was going to be infested with mice) while Danny bought, baited, and set traps.

Drop me in any city in the world and I will be okay. Pit me against a mouse, and I fall apart.

For all my chatter about humane mousetraps, I ended up using the regular ones. You know, the kinds that kill. My reasoning behind this was two-fold. One, my neighbor (i.e. hero-in-waiting) Tony told me he’d tried both traps and the live capture ones didn’t work as well. In the same breath, he told me he’d killed 18 mice in the first three days in his house. I guess he was trying to make me feel better? That comment led me to reason two: If I couldn’t use a stove on which a mouse had traversed, how did I think I could remove a live one from my house? Or live with one rattling around inside a trap until I could secure help?

Recognizing one’s limitations is very important.

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