Oppressive homes and spiders


It has been noted that I haven’t written that much about our new home. That is because I am having trouble settling into it. I love the area we live in, the block of land is gorgeous, our neighbours are great, it’s just that I’d rather live in a tent.

We’ve been here just over three months now. I’ve tried tricking myself into liking it – positive thinking and the like – but it just doesn’t work. I don’t say anything about it in front of the kids but I think they’re picking up on my vibe. Ella wants to know when we’re going to live in a clean and shiny house. I’m with her.

There are two main issues I have.

The inside of the house is mud brick, pine and rough sawn planks. And from almost anywhere you sit in the house, you can see outside, even if the curtains are closed. There are gaps in everything. There are also exposed beams, which would not normally be an issue, but when they come together with the rough sawn planks, it creates a heavy blanket of brown that feels like it is suffocating me. Okay, perhaps I’m a little more sensitive of my surrounds than some.

The second issue, and this will come as no surprise to those that have spent time with me, it that I have a problem with spiders. Not all spiders, mainly Huntsmans. Before we got to this house, I was getting better but I now realise that was due to the fact that I wasn’t seeing too many of them. After three months here, I’m back to where I started; screaming, sweats, heart racing, loss of confidence and depression. Oh yay! And because of the sheer number of spiders we have, I’ve started jumping at all of them; Wolf Spiders, White Tails even Daddy Long Legs. Not to forget that Ruby nearly got sent flying. She tickled me not long after I’d seen a Huntsman. We’re friends again.

Every time I look at the pine, I see brown knots in the wood that look like spiders. Every time I look at the mud bricks, the hollows and depressions look like spiders. Every splinter and split piece of timber on the ceiling, looks like a spider leg.

It’s strange how the depression comes into it. I lose confidence in normal things; going to the toilet – there are spiders there, hanging the washing out – I’ve seen spiders on the clothes line, cooking – there was a huge freaking Huntsman on the oven the other night, I nearly touched it, that was the same time Ruby tickled me, close or open the curtains – not going to happen. And these are just the basic things. Gardening and anything like that is out of the question too. With the loss of confidence, I become depressed as I can’t do the normal independent things I like. I rely on poor Mr T for everything. Then I feel worse as I feel I’m manipulating him. This leads to my self-esteem plummeting and things that I can’t do, for example not being able to focus a telescope or understand a finance module of the course I’m doing, cause me to breakdown – cry, feel stupid etc.

The temporary solution? Get the house sprayed for spiders. Normally not something I’d like to do, but this was now the only solution, that or move and break our lease. The reason the spiders are so bad here, all the gaps in the house I mentioned, are no barrier to the spiders. Our landlord has accepted the invoice for the pest control.

So three days before Christmas Day, I took the kids to the next biggest country town for the day. We played, ate and hung out at McDonalds for two hours before heading home for swimming lessons. We were allowed to go back into the house not long after it had been sprayed but I wasn’t going in before Mr T went through. I was scared at what I might find. He told Mr T that he’s never seen that many spiders before. I hope that’s just something they say to all the customers. Two words I don’t want to hear together again: spider and infestation.

Benalla 2015







The next two days were spent dodging dying spiders and bugs and the days after that spent cleaning them up. I haven’t seen any for a day or two and I’m trying to relax again but not five minutes ago, I nearly jumped out of my skin as a butterfly flew past. I think I’m back to square one with my phobia and my confidence and self-esteem need working on. Mr T wants me to get help for my phobia, but as anyone with a phobia knows, you need to want to face the fear, and currently I’m over it. It’s been in my face too intently.

Saying all that, once I can get going again, I’ll start sharing the house we’re currently living in. Maybe I’ll start enjoying it a bit more.

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