I hate spiders. I mean seriously... I can't stand the little black 8-legged freaks. If they left me alone forever and didn't ever come near me then I'd be very happy. Not only that, I could guarantee I would never suck them up with a vacuum, drown them in the bath or batter them to death with a very long broom.
I know where the phobia came from. When I was a child, we'd be sitting peacefully at home when suddenly my mother would erupt in an explosion of anger and swear words, all directed at the black blob on the wall. She would leap onto the sofa, throw whatever was near to hand at it, all the time shouting and cursing as if it was the devil incarnate. Naturally, this had a huge impact on my brother and me, and we would be scared witless, cowering on the sofa, terrified of the threat my mum had identified.
I was chatting to Rachel tonight about spiders and she trotted out the old cliche about them being more afraid of us than we are of them. Where did this particular expression originate I wonder? I guess wherever is not important as it is not true: I am CLEARLY a helluva lot more afraid of the 8-legged monster than it is of me! See how it nonchalantly wanders and meanders all over my wall, invading my space, not a care in the world (apart from maybe "I wonder if any flies have fallen into my trap yet, I feel racther peckish").
Meanwhile, I've dashed out of the room to call for assistance from a neighbour, begging them to move this thing from my room before it goes into hiding. If the neighbour's not in, or deliberately ignoring me(!), then I'm planning to see if I can get a late room at a local B&B, anything so I don't have to face this beast that awaits me.
To those of you reading this without such a phobia you probably have me written off as a mad cow. That may well be true, who am I to judge? But to those of you who share my affliction, I'm sure you not only empathise completely, but are now busy checking the walls and corners of the room just in case there's a spider watching you read this.