I wrapped a towel around me as best I could (so as not to permanently scar my 9-year-old son with an image of his 35-year-old nekkid mother) and darted to the top of the stairs.
"What? What is wrong?" I asked her, trying to triage the situation from my perch without losing any more dignity by letting the neighbors get a glimpse of me running around in a towel through the windows late in the morning.
"It's a spider mommy."
Oh wonderful, I thought, a spider - and here I am, powerless to protect my daughter from the awful beast.
"The spider was on my wagon and I killed it!"
She did what? She killed that thing all by herself?
"Can I flush it down the toilet?"
"Go ahead honey, I am so proud of you. You are such a big girl, taking care of that spider all by yourself." I told her, clinging to my towel for dear life. For my fear of spiders is even greater than my fear of vampires, if you can imagine such a thing.
And just like that, she became Katie, The Mighty Spider Slayer. I will know who to call the next time I have to venture out into the garage freezer late at night to get a roast for the next day, the whole time being eye-balled by a spider the size of a tennis ball (I am so not kidding). Instead of throwing a slab of raw meat in his direction to distract him while I get what I need from the freezer, I'll just send my fearless daughter after him!
I'm telling you, if I hadn't seen her moments after her birth, I would never believe that child was related to me.
But I am so glad she is.