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Earthworms, Buggies and Snakes

Where does the fear come from?

I was young, but not really young.  We were on a family vacation to Capital Reef in Southern Utah.  The trip was to include some fishing.  I don’t remember even going fishing during that trip but I know we were supposed to because we had stopped on the way down to buy a bunch of earth worms.

The drive was nearly uneventful.  Nearly.

We were pulling in to the park, but still had a way to go until our campsite.  My brother decided to bring a little bit of excitement to the trip.  He reached into the cooler behind the back seat.  He grabbed the container of earthworms.  I must have flinched, or something because he took that container and started tipping it while he held it over my head.

I freaked!!!

Not just a little freak.  Big.  Freak. Hyperventilating freak.  Tears streaming down my face freak.

Apparently it was really funny because he started laughing and chanting “Worms on Amy.”  Then my sister joined in the chant.  I’m  pretty sure my mom was trying hard not to laugh, but my memory is a bit fuzzy because of all my tears and hyperventilating.

We pulled in next to my grandparents.  My grandma, always prepared for anything, handed me a paper bag.  I began to breath normally again.

Only to have my dear siblings start chanting “worms on Amy” once again.  Finally my mom put a stop to it.

For years they would catch me off guard and throw something at me, accompanied with “Worms on Amy.”

In time they learned they could get the same hyperventilating response by throwing squished or plastic spiders on me.  “Buggies on Amy” was way more fun to say than “Worms on Amy” plus bugs were more accessible.

Since that time, there have been buggies, plastics worms, plastic snakes and plastic mice have been thrown on me.  All have elicited the same or similar response from me.

Did I think the worms would kill me?  make me sick?  bite me?  No, they simply freaked me out.

Am I still scared of worms and bugs? YES.

Do I hyperventilate when one is thrown at me for old time’s sake?  Yes, but I can now walk past one with only a slight loss of my breath.

What are you afraid of?

Be sure and check out Mama Kat’s writer’s workshop and the responses to several other prompts by clicking here.

Mama's Losin' It

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