The Raphael Remedy

I Think I Swallowed a Bug Yesterday

by | Oct 18, 2017 | Counseling

Well, for once, this is not just a clever title.  I wish it were.  I think I really did swallow a bug yesterday.  I was working at my desk with a glass of kombucha on the rocks and it happened.  I took a sip without looking and felt something else going down.

Now for those of you who are unfamiliar, Kombucha is a fermented tea.  It’s loaded with probiotics and enzymes and is an acquired taste, for sure.  My husband can’t even look at the stuff.  I’m pretty sure fermenting it in jars in my kitchen delayed my long awaited marriage proposal (“They look like brains!”).  What can I say?  I like it.  It’s not uncommon though to get bits of the scoby (Symbiotic Colony of Bacteria and Yeast responsible for the fermentation process – are you queasy yet?) when you’re drinking it, which can gross out many people.  I’m not one of them.  I’m sure it wasn’t a scoby as those are pretty gelatinous and go down rather easily.  This was different. I felt it. I’m pretty sure it was a moth. Maybe a lady bug, which is slightly less repugnant, but my best guess is…moth.

I was amazingly calm after it happened, although the more I think about it today the more skeeved out I get (and even a little nauseous). The point is that if you were to ask me to swallow a bug, any bug, even for $1000 there would be no way to convince me (although at $10,000 we might start negotiations). I would never countenance such a thing. Out of the question! It’s just too gross.

Which got me to thinking that there are a few things out there that too many people would not consider ever doing — like apologizing; admitting faults; or forgiving an enemy.  Trust me, after 25 years as a marriage counselor I know what I‘m talking about. There are a lot of people who would literally choke on an apology, cement their lips before ever admitting a fault and prefer death to forgiving someone who has hurt or offended them. Sometimes though, you have to just do the unthinkable. Sometimes doing it quickly without looking too hard or considering it too long is the ticket. I think we let too many hurts fester and our pride works us over, making the obvious solution unthinkable and undoable.

Consider the many advantages…you’ll cultivate a better relationship with your spouse and, having set the example, your spouse will more likely apologize and admit faults to you. Communication will increase and be more productive. You’ll set a better example for your kids. Always trying to be right and in control can demoralize children. Hearing you apologize and admit faults helps them to do the same. It helps them to trust their own feelings and grow in humility. Instead of wallowing in bitterness from hurts and offenses, forgiving will restore relationships with your family members and your group of friends will keep growing…and be more open to forgiving you when you mess up. Happiness will be a choice you make and not something that constantly eludes you.

Just like sipping a drink, we need to cultivate a habit of swallowing our pride – on the rocks or straight up. And once done you’ll find it doesn’t actually kill you…(she wrote happily after surviving the swallowing of a bug).

Allison Ricciardi, LMHC
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