The floor creaked as it always does when I tiptoed back into bed after Sivana's 2:00 a.m. nursing. Groggy and nearly half asleep before reaching the bed, I thought nothing of my usual THUMP back into my spot next to my sleeping husband.
Given that my dear husband has restless leg syndrome, I have learned to tune out the constant snap, crackling, scratch, thumping that goes on in his sleep with his ever moving feet. (It is so bad, that he actually wore a hole in our many-thread-count sheets!!). But something must have been different about this pattern of scritch-scratching because it woke both of us up.
I turned the night light on and we both looked at each other as if wondering who else could possibly be scratching away in our room. Finally, a look of familiarity flashes across Duane's eyes as he sleepily says "Oh, that's just a mouse in the walls. Go back to bed."
Contrary to what he believed would be comforting words, my pupils enlarge at the possibility of rodents roaming about within our walls. Especially given our attic is currently under renovation (a new space for Melina) and the walls are left bare to the construction bones of this very old house and consequently what has apparently turned into a trafficking house for mice!
Reluctantly, I ignore the little scratching noises and turn the lamp back off starring wide-eyed into the dark. A few more tosses and turns and Duane gets up to go to the bathroom. I hear his usual slow THUMP... THUMP... THUMP as he walks by the foot of the bed only to be thrown off by the sound of a sudden river dance move followed by a yelp as he suspends himself in the air for a moment to THUD back down at an impressively farther off distance! If only I had the lamp still on!
And in a flash (no pun intended), I turn that lamp back on as I jolt up in alarm.
"That blasted thing is IN our room!"
"It just scurried past my feet!"
Surely he is NOT going to think THESE are comforting words! I bolt up onto my knees as he runs out to the landing to grab a broom. Yes, apparently we will sweep the crap out of this little rodent to ensure he never, ever wants to return again. I chuckle nervously as the humour of this all begins to set in... particularly the little river dance move performed by my beloved husband! But alas, the task is still at hand to find that mouse!
Darn the fact that I have gotten lax in leaving dirty laundry all over our bedroom floor. This little stinker could be ANYWHERE, including the pant leg of my jeans! Sure enough, against the wall, this mouse scurries out from behind our dresser over to our bookshelf. After I yell "EW, EW, EW" Duane shakes the bookshelf and the mouse scurries out from behind that bookshelf back of our dresser. Well, this is going to be one long night if we keep this up. I run downstairs looking for a mouse trap. I run past Melina and her friends downstairs who were still up from their slumber party (and I was too distracted to care) as I announce, "There's a mouse in the house!"
Not a good idea.
I leave behind the "EW GROSS! NOT SLEEPING ON THE FLOOR, MOM!!" searching desperately for something that would catch this mouse. Nothing. I head up to the kitchen and grab the only thing that makes sense to me... an empty bag of popcorn from my snack earlier that evening.
Back upstairs, Duane is still armed with a broom in his underwear ready to attack this mouse. I place the open bag of popcorn (with a few crumbs leftover) in the path the mouse had taken to get to the bookshelf and leap back onto the bed. I reach over to the dresser and give it a shake.
Again, the mouse scatters by and runs right into the bag! I watch in amazement as my husband starts banging the bejeebers out of this bag only to watch the mouse run right back out and back behind the dresser!! Are you kidding me? Is this houdini mouse or what??
"How on earth did you not kill it, Duane??"
I shake the dresser again... nothing. Ew gross, did this thing just crawl back there and die?? I start slowly pulling out each drawer of the dresser with my heart racing as I half expect this mouse to scurry over my hand or something. But the last thing I want is to reach in for a clean pair of underwear one day only to mistakenly grab a dead mouse! Oh yuck, just thinking about it gives me the heebadee jeebadees!
Drawer number one... nothing.
Drawer number two... nothing.
Drawer number three... nothing... and so on so forth.
We use the broom to sweep inside the dresser frame and no sign of this mouse anywhere; however, I did find a tiny crack between the old baseboards and the wall. But surely nothing could fit through that?? Then again...
The rest of the night was met with fitful sleep as my super sonic ears listened for the pitter patter of Houdini's tiny feet somewhere in this house. Another nursing session left me uncomfortable as I sat in the rocking chair nursing Sivana in the dark with my feet off the floor!
A few weeks have passed and still no sign of Houdini (although he did make his scratching presence known just beside my rocking chair one night... thankfully, inside the walls). And somehow, reading the kids rhyming books about fox in the box and mouse in the house are not terribly comforting at this time.
Here's hoping this finds you doing well and rodent-free! And if you have any advice on how to catch a mouse that does not involve peanut butter, brooms or popcorn, we're all ears (no pun intended)!