An Ant Invasion Reminds Me How Important Having My Rock Is

Alexus Jones avatar

by Alexus Jones |

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fear, phobia

About a week ago, my boyfriend and I treated ourselves to Qdoba for lunch. I am in love with their food, as most people in my life know, especially their queso and chips. They serve way more chips than anyone could consume with a single meal, so I stashed the extra ones on our windowsill, as I usually do.

The next day, while watching TV, I had the urge to snack. I grabbed the bag of leftover chips, put it on my lap, and began snacking. After a few chips, I felt what I thought was a chip uncomfortably digging into my leg. I lifted the bag to shift its contents, and then noticed something that horrified me: My lap was covered in ants that were biting me.

Of course, I lost my mind.

An examination of the windowsill revealed that it, too, was covered in ants. They were even crawling around the bags of groceries I hadn’t yet put away. 

Normally, I boast that I’m the calm one in stressful situations, a trait I inherited from my mother. However, I have an extreme aversion to ants and, again, they had just been all over my lap. This repugnance has been well earned, because while previously living in Florida, I may have fallen into a pile or two of red ants. One never forgets these Florida traumas. 

Back at home with the chips and the ants, naturally, I was in tears. I Googled how to get rid of ants. Of course, this happened after all of the local stores were closed, so I called a friend to bring over some vinegar. I had read that vinegar would get rid of them, which it 100% did not. When that failed, I frantically called my mother, who suggested Windex, the glass cleaner, which thankfully did work.

Throughout this entire ordeal, my boyfriend was the epitome of calm. When I was on the verge of hyperventilating, he pulled me into a hug until my breathing slowed. He took charge of getting rid of the ants that had invaded our home, because I was too busy panicking and asking our cats why they weren’t being helpful.

Later, I learned he wasn’t naturally being calm, he had to force it for my benefit, as he was terrified, too. Knowing that made me even more grateful for how he handled the situation.

The coming years likely will be very stressful for me, with my mom’s Huntington’s diagnosis and, eventually, with my own symptoms when they appear. Knowing I have someone who can be my rock of stability and calmness is invaluable. 


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Virginia Andrews avatar

Virginia Andrews

Thank you for sharing. As a caregiver, it reminded me of the importance of staying calm and empathetic during episodes of seemingly unmanageable conflicts.


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