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Monday, October 20, 2014

{31 Days: Day 20} Facing Fear

I detest bats. I think they're gross, creepy, evil, and have I mentioned gross? They eat bugs, I get it. They are amazing creatures in their own right, I get it. But I cannot stand them. I say again: gross. I remember one time I had a dream there were bats chasing me, and I ran into a car and shut the door, and I ended up closing bats in the door. Yuck...even remembering that makes me gag a little. I have no soft spot in my heart for bats. So there's that.

One day a few years ago, I showed up to work and my colleague said, "Did you see our little friend?" I had no idea what he was asking and responded, "What do you mean?"
"The bat."
"What. Bat. What? Where?" (trying not to panic)
"Above the door."
"As in the door I just walked in through?"

He walked me outside and pointed. Sure enough, there was a furry, creepy bat, roosting above the door. This was not the first time I had seen a bat on a building where I work. It happened a couple of times in Wyoming, but this was the first time I was aware of at a bank, in the middle of town, in North Dakota. It was high enough above the door that I didn't feel entirely threatened, so I made it a point to march a few unsuspecting souls outside to see our new resident. That was a big mistake.

Within an hour, there were people feigning illness, people dropping from anxiety attacks, and an entire drama-induced incident because there was a bat on the outside of the building. One person exclaimed, "It better not go in my car!" Because bats tend to leave their roost in broad daylight to seek out a sedan with a cracked-open window. Puh-lease. Soon enough, three business-suited men marched outside to assess the situation.  They were discussing which one of them was going to smash the little dude with a shovel. Because nothing says, "Welcome to our building" quite like bat blood splattered all over one of the entrances. Business 101.

Are you kidding me....

I had to do something to save the disgusting bat. Lord have mercy.

The local president at the time had a huge collection of large plastic drink cups from area eateries like Subway. I went in to his office and asked to borrow a cup. He wanted to know why, and I told him, "I'm going to get rid of the bat." He handed me a cup and wished me luck. I went to the bathroom and filled the cup with water. Walking back outside, I stood at a pre-determined distance where I felt I was far enough away from the bat, yet close enough to accomplish my mission.

I had to give myself some self-talk and really pump myself up with confidence. I let out some kind of weird "oh crap" quiet groan, and threw the water on the bat. It got wet. It lifted its head and chattered it's teeth and started breathing fast. "Oh crap." I ran back inside, filled the cup with water again and ran back out. Standing in the same place, making the same groan, I threw the water again. Bullseye. The bat made a hideous chatter noise, and flew away. 

THE BAT FLEW AWAY! I stood, watching it, as it left the area. I felt pride, but mostly I felt relief. I hate bats, but I didn't think the guy needed to be splattered on the side of our building.

I walked back inside and back to the president's office. I proudly proclaimed, "I caught him!" and then pretended to trip and throw the "bat" directly at him sitting in his desk. It was really funny...until I realized he was on a conference call and everyone who could hear (he was on speakerphone) was then inquiring as to what was going on. Whoops. 

The important thing was the bat was gone. There was no bloodshed. And I had gone out there in spite of my intense dislike of the creepy bat to begin with. I had done it.

When Little Miss gets scared at nighttime, we remind her she can sing "Jesus Loves Me", and in calling on the authority of His name, and knowing she is cared for by Him, fears can dissipate. Yet, I'm entirely hypocritical. I fear constantly. My pregnancy with Little Man was 35 weeks of fear. My life since, has been filled with fear of the unknown. I fear constantly. And while I tell my daughter to call on the power of Jesus' name, I somehow feel like I am an exception. Like His power won't work for me. Or rather, like I don't deserve to call on Him. 

I know. Absurd.

It's time I face my fears. Whether I stand there making strange groaning noises, or stand confidently in my convictions, I have all the strength I need to face my fears. His name holds all the power I'll need. Do not be timid. Do not be afraid. Face your fears. Or come hold my hand while I face mine.

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