A couple of weeks ago I saw a mouse scurry from under my bed into my closet.
I had been out of town all weekend, I was tired and socially taxed. I walked into my room and collapsed onto the bed, that’s when I saw him.
From somewhere deep down came a reluctant groan, acceptance of a silent challenge.
“Game on my tiny friend”
I named him Maurice.
I do not enjoy killing anything, I’m definitely the sentimental type. I saw him two or three times and I tried to stop up the ways he was getting in but he was persistent.
I finally baited a trap with peanut butter late last week.
Nothing for days. I thought maybe he’d moved on, I was relieved.
I woke up today and saw his limp body underneath the overturned trap. I gathered he and the trap into a brown paper bag. Sigh.
Last night my 16 year old niece had a friend over to stay the night. While looking for the TV remote my sister went to look in her room and discovered the two girls with alcohol and weed. The friend was sent home, my niece’s phone and contraband confiscated.
My sister then went painfully through her daughter’s phone revealing that she’s been using drugs and alcohol, sexually active, and become a talented liar. There was heartbreak all over her face.
My niece has the emotional maturity of most kids her age, which is close to none. But, of course, that’s not the way she sees it.
Like most young people she wants the benefits of being an adult but is unaware of the great costs of such benefits or the gravity of the choices you make as you get older. It was a really sobering evening.
Getting back to Maurice…
With the brown paper bag in hand I crossed through the living room to the front door. I saw my sister and niece talking, discussing how things were going to be different.
I had told my niece about Maurice after I saw him the first time. She was against the idea of a trap and admonished me for setting it.
I stopped where they were, held up the bag and said “can you guess what I’ve got here?” I shook it so she could tell there was something inside.
Upon discovering what was inside my niece burst into tears and sobbed.
Still a kid.