I could cry.
I was just innocently sitting scrolling through endless Father’s Day gift ideas when I see movement out of the corner of my eye.
My first thought was that it was a spider. We get pretty big ones sometimes. But this was the biggest spider I’d ever seen. I stare, horrified. I come to realise that it’s not a spider.
It’s a fucking rat!
After denial came anger (because I’m apparently going through the five stages of grief). Anger that I spend my whole goddamn life cleaning this house and we still end up with rats. We just got rid of ants. After just getting rid of fruit flies who’d laid their larvae in our hoover.
So next comes bargaining. I wish I’d gone to bed at a reasonable time, then I wouldn’t have seen it, and it wouldn’t exist. If I start going to bed at a reasonable time the rat will be no more right? I’ll wake up and find this was just a bad dream.
Depression and acceptance. Nope, there is definitely a rat and I need to do something about it. I want to go and get an adult. But I am the adult.
So I go and wake Phil.
But my movement startles it and it bolts behind Caide’s reading corner unit.
I feel like Phil doesn’t believe me. He thinks I’ve cracked. I’m seeing things. Maybe I am. I mean, why would there be a rat? Our house is clean. Nothings chewed. There’s no droppings anywhere. There is no evidence of rodents. Except the one I saw while bleary eyed at 1am.
We can’t find it. We move the unit but it’s not there. There’s no gaps in the skirting. There’s nowhere it could’ve gone.
Anxiety, anxiety, anxiety.
Phil reassures me that it’s more scared of me than I am of it and it’s not going to climb into the babies’ cots and bite them, and goes back to bed.
I am too freaked out to sleep. I go back to my laptop. After a while the bloody thing comes out again. My first thought is that it’s actually quite small. Might just be a mouse.
It hides again. I’m pretty sure it’s behind the facing on the bottom of our bookshelves. I get Phil again because he is the only person on this planet that can keep me calm and I’m about to have a full-blown panic attack.
As grumpy as he is about being woken again 3 hours before his alarm is going off for work, he removes the facing. “Oh there is one!” (Despite this exclamation, he still claims that he believed me all along…) And out it scarpers, into the hallway and out of sight.
We have no idea what room it went into.
We still don’t.
I want to move house.