One Batty Experience

The following is one of my favorite stories to tell about my dad. It is an adaptation of a paper I wrote for a college class about 11 years ago. After reading it again for myself, it seems I must have taken some creative liberties in order to gain an ‘A’ on the paper. However, the story is true.

It was an unusually hot and muggy July night. Since my small, upstairs bedroom always felt like a sauna, I was sleeping on the living room floor in the wonderful presence of air conditioning. I was having such a good time enjoying the most wonderful dream, that I never imagined what the night held for me.

Around 2 a.m., I was startled awake by a loud noise. Telling my sister off under my breath for not putting the cat out, I got up and turned on the light. I didn’t see the cat anywhere, but I did discover the source of my early morning annoyance. Mom’s old three-legged cow creamer on top of the six-foot antique secretary was knocked over. I thought to myself, “Well, what’s the problem? It has three legs to stand on, and the cat certainly didn’t get up there.”

It was then when I saw a bird flying back and forth in the living room, wings constantly flapping, slamming into the walls, the ceiling, and light fixtures. Just when I was wondering how in the world a bird got into the house, it flew over my head, almost touching my hair. Then all of a sudden I realized it wasn’t a bird – it was a bat!

I freaked out and threw on my housecoat, ran to the bottom of the stairs and yelled, “Dad! Dad!” No answer. I screamed even louder and with greater panic in my voice, “DAD!! DAD!!” He was obviously dead to the world, so I took the stairs two at a time and knocked on my parents’ bedroom door. Dad groggily answered, “Yeah.”

I replied as calmly as I could, “There’s a bat downstairs!”

“I’ll be there in a minute,” he replied. So I went and waited at the bottom of the stairs. And waited. And waited. While I was waiting on my slow father, the neck-biting critter flew out of the living room and dove right at me!

It seemed like an eternity; but just a few minutes later, Dad finally decided to grace me with his presence – in his underwear! Because he never walked around the house half naked, I thought he was dawdling while putting pants on, but no! He was getting in a few more Z’s before coming to my rescue.

Standing in the hallway, Dad told me to go get the broom. I told him ever so gently, “You’re outta your mind! The broom is in the kitchen and that’s where that ugly thing is!” So he grabbed a tennis racket in the hallway and sauntered to the kitchen while I stayed back, since the vicious monster was after me.

I heard some banging and clanging coming from the kitchen. I was hoping my dad was beating the snot out of the flying rat without destroying mom’s kitchen. The noises finally stopped and it was quiet. When I safely entered the kitchen, I saw dad kneeling on the floor with the bat trapped under the tennis racket. My hero!

He instructed, “Get me something to kill it with.”

“Ya want a paring knife?” I innocently asked.

“No, just get me the broom.” Since it was safe for me to get it now, I stepped over the trapped winged rodent and pulled the broom out of the closet. I told him to wait till I left the room before he killed it. While I think bats are nasty creatures, I didn’t want to witness my dad committing murder in the kitchen with the broom handle while wearing skivvies. After killing the fanged beast, he then proceeded to do whatever was necessary to dispose of the ferocious mammal.

Despite Dad’s assurance that everything was okay, I got little sleep that night because I was haunted with nightmares of being attacked by a wicked vampire.

My hero!

My hero!

Dreamy Dreams

For some time now I have toyed with the idea of starting a blog. I had to create and write one for a class once and had fun with it, yet I never continued with it. Why? I have no idea. Lack of time? Lack of motivation? Maybe. Maybe not. I think it has to do with the decision to finally follow through on a dream.

I’ve always been a daydreamer. Yes, that’s a little known fact about me. What I’m known for, though, are the dreams I have in my sleep. I’ve said several times that if I had written down all of my dreams, I could write a book. However, then I’d have a ton of shrinks calling to analyze me! I’ve even had a dream within a dream. How weird is that? Most of my dreams are crazy but memorable. When I was a kid I helped Batman & Robin catch the bad guy. That’s right! I caught the villain because Bat Girl was unavailable. At one time many of my dreams had to do with water and bridges. Don’t even try to analyze that one! More recently, I dreamed I was sailing around the world with Sean Connery (I know, not necessarily every woman’s dream guy), and we were near Cuba. How do I know that? Because “CUBA” was written in the clouds. See? I told you: CRAZY!

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Not only can my dreams be weird and crazy – or just plain “out there” – they can be very detailed and real. One night I saw a guy standing in my bedroom. It was so real, I closed my eyes and opened them again, and he was gone. Freaky! There are times I’ll have dreams with people in them who I haven’t seen, talked to, or even thought of in years. And in case you’re wondering…yes, I dream in color most of the time! I think this only proves that my mind has one serious imagination. But dreams are not reserved for sleeping.

We can have dreams for our future. Dreams of success. Dreams of a new car. A bigger house. More money. Love and romance. Kids. And the list goes on and on. There’s nothing wrong with dreaming about the future, but we can’t allow those dreams to overtake our here and now. Luke Skywalker learned about this in the second installment of the original Star Wars Trilogy. The “Solomon” of the Star Wars Universe, Yoda, had this to say about Luke: “This one, a long time have I watched. All his life as he looked away to the future, to the horizon, never his mind on where he was, what he was doing.” No wonder Luke is my favorite – I can relate to him! In fact, that’s why Jesus says, in Matthew 6:24, “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself.” (Bet you didn’t realize Star Wars could be scriptural!)

Two of my favorite movie characters!

Two of my favorite movie characters!

Jeremiah 29:11 says, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” There are times when God will reveal those plans for us by planting the desire and passion in our hearts. Sometimes these dreams don’t come to fruition, because we give up on them. Either we lose faith in ourselves or we lose faith that God will fulfill them. Or maybe we are even afraid of those dreams, of the unknown. Fear can keep us from many things. (Possibly a blog topic for the future.) However, some dreams should be given up. Like the time when I wanted to be a singer. Not a dream anyone would want me to strive for!

I think that is what has happened to me with some of my dreams. What would I even write about? Would anyone listen? What if it doesn’t make sense? What if I don’t have what it takes? Do I really have anything to say? According to Matthew West, a Christian music artist:

If you’re livin’, if you’re breathin’

You got something to say

And you know your heart is beatin’

You got something to say

I’m learning that sometimes I just need to jump right in and not be afraid of what happens; because if I think about it too long, I’ll talk myself out of it. That’s what I’m doing today. I’m doing a cannonball into the water. I may not know how to swim after I jump in, but at least I can dream about swimming like a pro!