Remember that one time when I said I was occasionally going to blog about things other than aerial? Yeah, I lied. Even my non-aerial stories are about aerial. Like this one, which is about a spider!
Today, we were practicing with the roll-up door (the building is a converted warehouse) open.
Naturally, this means some bugs are going to get in; especially in a place like South Carolina.
So shortly after that picture was taken we were moving some mats around, for reasons. Then suddenly, the girl who was holding the other end of the mat I was moving says, “there’s a spider!” and drops her end while taking a few steps back.
Now, for anyone who hasn’t been around here for a while, I have been severely arachnophobic for as long as I can remember. Historically, in a situation like that, I would have jumped, screamed, dropped my end of the mat, and booked it a safe distance away from there as soon as I heard the alarm. However, at the end of last year and beginning of this year, I decided to put myself through exposure therapy to learn to deal with that fear. So today, when she said there was a spider, I didn’t react that way at all.
I will admit that I jumped a bit at first – exposure therapy changes your response to fear, not the fear itself. But I didn’t drop the mat. And although I didn’t want to have to be the one to deal with the spider, I didn’t panic when we ended up losing track of it somewhere in the mats I was about to standing on. (Note: Losing a spider used to be my absolute worst nightmare.)
And then, I went on to continue stepping on those mats and was barely even bothered by it! I did look for the spider the first few times I was over there, but within a few minutes I had completely forgotten about it and wasn’t even worried anymore. That’s a pretty big deal when you compare it to an incident in October where I lost a spider in my bathroom and ended up wasting nearly two hours freaking out over what to do about it when I should have been either at the DMV getting a new license or at work.
So in other words, this was a major victory. And the time/money I put into the exposure therapy has now proven itself 1000% worth it.