This past weekend, the girls got an unexpected visitor.
We’d been in and out of the house all day because of the amazing weather, and the girls, as is often the case with them, had been so wrapped up in their play that they left the front door wide open more than once.
It was most definitely during one of those forgetful moments that our visitor wandered in undetected.
But not undetected for long.
Ana and Emma were watching a movie on Ana’s TV when all of a sudden they began screaming like someone was killing them. They ran out of the room faster than I’ve ever seen either of them run and came up to me, shouting, “Mommy! Mommy! Mommy!”
“What?,” I asked, thinking that something was truly, horribly wrong. Had the ceiling caved in? Had the bed collapsed? Was the house about to explode or something?
“There’s a LIZARD in Ana’s ROOM!,” Emma screamed.
“A lizard?,” I asked, breathing in relief.
“YES!,” Ana shrieked. “A green LIZARD!”
“Is he the size of a Komodo dragon?,” I asked, assessing that he must certainly be huge to warrant this much hysteria, especially given the way that Emma was twitching around the room, wringing her hands and moaning. (Seriously.)
“It’s a lizard!,” Ana exclaimed. “You have to get him OUT!”
“You want me to kill him?,” I asked, getting up and making my way to her room.
“NO!,” Ana yelled after me. “It’ll be so MESSY if you KILL him!”
“Fine,” I told her, now to her room. “I’ll scoop him up in something and carry him out.”
As I searched high and low for the elusive lizard, I heard the girls talking.
“Oh, no,” Emma moaned. “Ana, what if that lizard has FRIENDS he brought with him?! There could be lizards all over the house!”
“In that case,” Ana said, matter-of-factly with an edge of panic in her voice, “we will have to MOVE OUT.”
“Where was the lizard?,” I asked, not finding him anywhere.
“On Ana’s bed!,” Emma cried. “He’s in your BED, Ana! Where are you going to SLEEP?!”
“We’ll have to have sleepovers in your room every night now,” Ana said, even more panic in her voice.
Sure enough, there was the lizard, right on Ana’s pillow, looking totally freaked out by all the yelling.
“Ana,” I said, “I’m going to use this container you have your paper dolls in to sccop him up with.”
“What?! He can’t go in there!”
“Just until I can get him outside,” I clarified. “Unless you’d like me to carry him out in my hands.”
More yelling and freaking out. The lizard was looking very upset at this point.
I scooped him up and trapped him and asked Ana, “Can you open the door up?”
She did, holding it very far away from her while Emma continued dancing around and chanting, “Ew, ew, ew!”
“You know,” I said, “our house in Okinawa had geckos in it all the time. And you two never freaked out like this.”
“We were babies! We didn’t know any better!,” Ana yelled from behind the door, which she’d shut and locked, effectively keeping me and the lizard OUT.
I coaxed the poor, sad lizard out of the box and watched him run away like someone fleeing a burning building.
After I convinced Ana to let me back in (seriously), the girls suddenly became very concerned about the lizard and whether or not he’d be okay re-entering his own habitat like that with all of the excitement that had just gone on. You know, the yelling and screaming and jumping up and down.
But I assured them that he would be just fine… but only if he never, ever came back.
(And Emma has woken me up every night since swearing that she hears lizards running all over her room. Awesome. Thank you, green lizard!)