It’s official. My 2.5yr training programme to get my son to like spiders has failed.
When he was about three months old, we bought him Sidney. Sidney was a soft toy spider who was greatly reduced because despite his jolly primary colours and boingy noise when dangled, he was still decidedly spider. He was certainly not fun to have hanging from the roof of the car, which we decided to try once in the name of social experimentation.
Just typing the word ‘spider’ makes me feel a bit uneasy.
Since buying Sidney and playfully jostling him so he no longer boings, I have done everything possible to train my son to love all things arachnid.
(writing ‘arachnid’ just as bad as ‘spider’)
Most recently, I made lots of exciting noises about visiting the section of the Natural History Museum that contained lots of our eight-legged friends (bit easier to write). I thought I was very convincing. Fortunately, it was closing time and we didn’t actually have time to see any of ‘them’.
Fast-forward to 15mins ago.
My partner spotted what was essentially a tarantula (but worse) on our lounge wall.
This was greeted with shrieks from my toddler and cries of ‘SPIDER!!!!’ And ‘GET IT!!!!’.
It was then that I realised my master plan had failed.
I was pleased that he (my son that is, not the spider, who might have been a lady spider for all we knew) elected my partner to ‘get it ‘ when I democratically gave him a choice of captor.
Being of such gargantuan proportions, there was no way those eight legs would fit under ANY receptacle and we therefore knew we would have no choice.
There would have to be murder in the house.
Not an attractive lesson for my son, nor an attractive moral proposition for my pseudo-vegetarian self. But we had no choice. It was self-defence.
And it was then that I realised that whilst Mission:Get a Trained and Humane Spider Catcher in the House had unequivocally failed, we had succeeded in another way.
As my partner went towards Sidney’s friend (easiest of all to write), my son said ‘Sorry spider’.
Unmoved, my partner continued in her death quest (accompanied by a lot of un-murderer-like squealing) and the hoover consumed a tickly meal.
However, this death has not been in vain. My partner has done some hoovering. Just to make really sure that this particular Incey Wincey will most definitely not be climbing back up the hoover spout.