Spring is finally here! How do I know? Besides the fact that it is April, the last snowfall occurred last week. NO MORE SHOVELING SNOW! Also, my doorbell has been ringing consistently, signalling visitations from lawn care services. Uh huh! And yes…I did hear a few lawn mowers powered up today! Spring is finally here! Hurrah! Joy! Bliss! Bzzzzzzzz. What? Bzzzzzz! My yearly dreaded visitors have arrived as well. Oh joy…oh bliss?
Our beautiful, first warm day was 24 degrees celsius (or a balmy 75F). The air was warm, the sun was shining, the grass was green, and the birds were singing. Tulips and daffodils are popping up around the neighbourhood.
Hazzah! We can open our windows again! I decided that it was time for me to meander around my backyard and enjoy breathing in non-frigid air. Spring! A time of renewal and rebirth. Spring is also the time that I steel myself to become a Warrior Princess!
No swords, but many a facial tissue, reliable flat shoe, or any other item that might slay my evil spring foe…the beige house spider.
Ewwww, ewwwww, ewwwwwww! I’ll be honest, sometimes I will negotiate with the spider, “I will leave this room and come back in ten minutes. If you are still here, then your life is over. Your call!” Crazy? Maybe, but they really are good at eating little flies (which I also deplore) so it’s more like a negotiation for cohabitation. Bugs are a fact of life, but the bane of my existence is the diminutive, annoying, buzzing, carnivore…the mosquito!
I consider myself a happy…super happy…ok, Pollyanna-happy type person. I have consciously decided to find the good in everything; the silver lining, so to speak. Yet, after that wonderfully, warm, spring day, I discovered something new upon my person that thwarted my normal “happy-go-lucky” days. Bites!!! Awful, itchy, little red welts around my ankles. Yes, both ankles. I showed Wiseguy my ‘skeeter’ (a.k.a. mosquito) bites and he said, “There are no mosquitos out yet.” An easy claim for someone who NEVER, EVER, EVER, gets bit by mosquitos! I am not only his wife, but his mosquito repellent.
My father once told me: “Once you have been bitten by mosquitos 50 times they will stop biting you because you have so much venom in your body that your blood isn’t appealing anymore.” Well guess what dad? I tested that theory one year. I had 63 bites. You know what else? They were still biting me!
I truly believe that I have some super sweet, absolutely amazing blood that attracts these buzzing little vixens to me. Vixens? Yes, only female mosquitos bite and suck blood. You can read all about it, but I’ll summarize it for you:
- Females are the vampires
- Males prefer fruit juices
- Females also go for fruit juice; the blood is to feed eggs – 200 eggs!!!!! Guess whose kids love me too?
- Eggs are jacuzzi-ed; drain every water puddle around you to avoid mosquitos!
Back to my original itchy horror. Wiseguy said I didn’t get bit by mosquitos. I have an ankle (oops…two ankles) with lumpy bite marks. My pups don’t have ticks or fleas. I have seen flea bites and what I have are not flea bites. I know what a ‘squito bite looks like and feels like. Again, I am their main blood donor. I should just get a t-shirt that says: Mosquito – Blood donor clinic open. Yes, I am feeding the mosquito population; not by choice, but by popular demand.
Did I ever mention that I had this wonderful disease called “West Nile Virus“? Oh yes, my popular buzzing friends decided that I needed to take some time off work. So, I received a wonderful bite from my local mosquito friend and it felt different from my usual experiences. True enough, a couple of days later I started getting a rash. It spread from my legs to my neck within two days. I went to one hospital and said, “I think I have West Nile virus.” I was told (after three hours and no tests) that I probably had a reaction to a strawberry I had devoured. Note: I have no food allergies. They sent me home.
The itchy red splotches did not go away. After a week, I found that I suddenly could not walk straight. I was leaning left. Emergency unit again, but a different hospital. “You have vertigo,” said the nice doctor. “I think I have West Nile virus,” I declared when she asked about the rash. “Probably pesticides on strawberries or blueberries,” she proclaimed. Hmmmm….why would no one believe me?
So, after two weeks of being off work, I needed a note from my family doctor which would state I was able to return to work. She looked at all the new notes in my file, “Wow,” she laughed, “you’ve been busy.” “I think I had West Nile virus,” I declared. “Did you get tested?” she inquired. I relayed my requests to be tested and lack of action and so SHE made sure I got tested. Guess what? Booyah!!!! West Nile virus! I did have it! Okay, it wasn’t good that I had it, but I was so thankful that:
- Someone believed me
- Someone tested me
- I WAS RIGHT!!! (yes, many exclamation points, but so important after nobody believed me and I had physical proof!)
Moral of the story: Skeeters, ‘squitos…they are VAMPIRES!
- I did need a break from work – rashes / vertigo are a solution
- I have the bestest, sweetest blood around! Why wouldn’t those blood suckers seek me out. Oh joy! Oh bliss?