I’ve got mice. Well, correction I HAD mice. A few weeks ago I could no longer pretend I wasn’t hearing scritch- scratching in the attic. And listen, I know pretending NOT to hear it is NOT exactly the best way to deal, but sometimes this is just what we do. The scritch- scratching would come and go and I sort of just kept hoping it would go and stay gone.
But no. It wouldn’t. And I knew it was time to either burn down my house or call for help.
Side story: I have woods behind my house. I’m surrounded by wildlife, of which I’ve always fondly said, “I love nature. I just don’t like it near me.” So this isn’t the first time I’ve had mice. And I’ve honestly TRIED to handle the job myself, but I just can’t. I’m a pretty tough chica, but I have literally cried hysterically and talked myself through emptying mousetraps by saying things like, “You’ve been divorced! You’ve broken bones! You’ve been on Match.com! You can do this! You’ve done a lot of scary things! That mouse is dead! This is not scary!” But somehow, this powerful pep talking has not worked.
So I called an exterminator to take care of the problem. Jeff has been great. He’s super brave. Every time he goes up in my attic, I ask him if he’s scared. Or I ask him if he’s grossed out. And he always says things like, “No.”or “This is my job.” So, he’s been great.
But last week, after he was down in my basement catching mice and setting traps and doing his job, he came upstairs and said, “You have a big problem down there.”
Jeff. Don’t leave me cryin’ in the club.
This is not a phrase a homeowner wants to hear. Ever.
It turns out, when he was moving insulation around and doing his thing, he found some wet and rotted wood.
Awesome. So not only did I have mice, I needed to get my handyman in there, STAT.
(There’s nothing super STAT about Handyman Joe. He is EXACTLY like having Joe Pesci at my house doing chores. Every last thing about him. But he calls me Julie Girl, which I secretly love, so we’re basically best friends now.)
Later that night, when Boyfriend Erik, not to be confused with Exterminator Jeff or Handyman Joe (or Tree-Trimmer Guy who sends flowers after he does a job here) and I were at the gym, I was recounting the nightmare of my day and whining about all of the homeowner issues I was facing. When I was finished, he looked at me and said, “Well thank God for the mice.”
Thank God for the mice? Wait, what?
Yes. Thank God for the mice. If it weren’t for the mice, Exterminator Jeff never would’ve moved the insulation and uncovered the rotted wood. The rotted wood is already a big problem– but at least now it can be corrected by Handyman Joe. Had it not been found at all, it could’ve been DISASTROUS.
So in a weird way– a REALLY weird way– thank God for the mice. (It hurts to even write that. I am nuts.)
I keep thinking about what other “mice” I might have in my life–problems and circumstances I’m only seeing from one perspective; things that might actually have value and purpose beyond the surface. I’m trying to view irritating matters as potential mice and use them for growth and change and goodness. I’m looking for silver linings a little more carefully. (Big points for Boyfriend Erik here…)
I know. I know. It’s practically sickening– all of the positivity around this joint. But it’s either that, or burn the place down, and I kinda love it here. Mice and all.