I’d felt something move as I woke into consciousness, something LIVING was MOVING either in between my two mattresses or inside of the mattress underneath me. My mind ran through a few possibilities as I woke up.
Monster? No – those don’t exist.
Wild Animal? YES!
My eyes became saucers as I rigidized in fear, feeling more movements in the mattress. “It” stopped moving around. “It” sensed I was awake. Did it want to eat me? Why was “it” in my bed to begin with? My mind raced. I need a plan. I need to get it before it gets me, and right now I need to get out of here! I felt it breathing under me as I remained stiff. It felt much bigger than a mouse; I’ve slept with mice before and they are loud, scuffling little critters that love to chew, but this “it” was silent and BIG, sneaky and sleuthy. Perhaps it wasn’t a legged creature after all, but a snake; snakes might be silent; do snakes breathe? Do snakes even have lungs? Whatever “it” was, I needed to outsmart it before it outsmarted me…after all, wild animals are just that – wild and unpredictable. I held my breath to more clearly ascertain it’s whereabouts and whether it was really alive. I wasn’t breathing, but I felt “it” breathing underneath me in short little breaths. Oh great. This was sooo not on my agenda for the day.
I decided that when I moved, I had to move fast. On the count of three, I’m going to throw myself with one big movement into my wheelchair and get the heck out of dodge! I gently tapped my alarm clock to give me a little light. One, Two, Three…Fling. I landed where I had intended, in my wheelchair, and I beat it for the door with the enthusiasm of a runner starting a race. The bedroom door slammed behind me as I stared down the crack between the door and the floor with my laser beam glare, heart pounding.
Maybe it’s trapped. If it is a snake, I doubt it is trapped. I need help. I am NOT going back in there! Who can I call? Rachel.
I picked up the office phone since I’d left my cell phone, keys, shoes, and one crutch in my bedroom with “it” (bad plan). I called, no answer. Each voicemail sounded more desperate. “Uh, Rachel, I need help. PLEEEEEAAAASE answer the phone!!! I think there’s something in my bed! My Darco boots are in there and my crutch too, so I can’t get to your house. I really hope your phone isn’t on silent. Oy veh!” Rachel came over in a few minutes to find my eyes still glued to the bedroom door. “Thanks for coming over.” She went in and nudged the bed a few times. Nothing seemed to scurry. Rachel wasn’t going to stick her head under the bed to search and who was I to blame her? Where’s that husband I’ve been waiting 10 years to meet? Coulda used his services!
She called Mitch, and before I knew she’d called, I called the POLICE! Yes, I did. In the calmest voice I could find I said, “Hi, um, yeah, I’m single and I think I’ve got a critter in my bed, and I’m freaked out. I’m the lady in the wheelchair. Can you help me? I think it’s a snake.” No problem pulling out the “lady in a wheelchair” card when necessary…and when battling potentially venom-containing critters, I deem it Necessary! “Okay, we will send someone right over. Answer the door when they come.” In just a few minutes, a police man showed up. He was a tall black man who had eaten just a few too many donuts. And I was the bald chick wearing a purple nightie with non-matching denim jacket, sitting in a wheelchair. Geez, this is a tad more awkward than I anticipated; sure hope the bald thing won’t make him nervous, though I guess at the moment I look fairly harmless. Barney Fife, the donut man’s partner, arrived in a few seconds and I was glad there were two of them to battle the beast in my bedroom.
They followed my laser beams into the bedroom and checked under the covers, under the bed, between the mattresses, behind the furniture, in the closet. I’d never been so glad for a search and seizure operation in my life.
Perhaps that piece of driftwood Mike feared was an alligator in the lake on Saturday was in fact coming to exert his revenge upon my doubt of both his existence and volatility.
Flashlights shown, furniture was moved.
The policemen were sweet and I appreciated their help. Mitch arrived just as they left. He searched the whole apartment and not just the bedroom. Though I doubt anyone or anything could have escaped my laser eyes, I didn’t want to take the chance. Mitch assured me all was clear and I thanked him for getting up so early to help. I sighed with a little relief.
But if “it” wasn’t an “it,” What could it have been?
Suddenly I felt stupid. Yeah, those. I sometimes forget how intense my muscle and intestine spasms can be, and though they usually are painful, occasionally I don’t have much pain; my body just moves with the spasms and I can’t do much about it. When they wake me up out of a sound sleep, however, it can really play with my mind!
Ahhhhhh…. Just another one of the joys of having odd health problems.
I felt akin to the writer of this supposed “traditional Scottish prayer” who wrote:
From ghoulies and ghosties
And long-leggedy beasties (and the not-so-long-leggedy beasties as well)
And things that go bump in the night,
Good Lord, deliver us!
Another writer had a more humorous approach to his non-traditional, non-Scottish, half-prayer:
I’ve never been one, for being afraid
or running away from a fight,
but I shiver with fear, whenever I hear
things that go bump in the night.
You can call me a fool, if I hear a ghoul
creaking it’s foot on the stair,
I’m outta that place, at double quick pace
you’re not going to keep me in there.
I know they’re not real, it’s just how I feel
we all have our crosses to bear,
at the first chilly breeze, I’m down on my knees
reciting the words of a prayer.
If I saw a ghost, what would frighten me most
would be if they noticed me too,
I’d probably faint, to see summat that aint
something you shouldn’t see through.
The worst thing I’ve seen, in life or on screen
is a poltergeist turning her head,
I kept on the light, for many a night
and always checked under my bed.
You may laugh and scoff, if it’s spooky I’m off
at the first sign of something not right,
it’s true what I’ve said, I’m afraid of the dead
and things that go bump in the night….