Amazing Kids! Magazine

Frightening Bee Experience

By Colleen Luttrell, age 13, Alabama

 

Big, angry, and determined. That was the bee that I unfairly crossed paths with to create the worst day of my life. I am still scarred from my frightening bee experience, when I was just six. Now today, six years later, I still flinch and scramble away from bees of any kind. I will try to enlighten you on my bee experience in the least frightening way.

My siblings, slopping wet from the pool, chased the bee with water guns. They pounded the bee with water when it got in shooting distance. The bee, getting angrier and angrier with each hit, zoomed around the pool. I did nothing to that bee, and of course, I would the one to feel its wrath. When my siblings finished aggravating the bee with water, they jumped back in the pool for a game of Chicken Fight. The bee, of course, circled us from above waiting for a chance to strike. Brooke, my older sister, patted her shoulders, asking me wordlessly to hop on.

“No,” I said. “What if that bee tries to sting me?”

“It won’t,” Brooke told me.  But that wasn’t enough for me; I needed a promise.

“Colleen, I promise that bee isn’t going to sting you or anyone here. So, hurry and jump on my shoulders; we are ready to start.”

Nervous and not fully convinced, I reluctantly climbed on her shoulders. You can imagine what happened next. Not even a minute into the game, the bee saw its opportunity, flew down, and stung me. I screamed, jumped off my sister’s shoulder, and sank into the pool. In reality, the sting felt like a pin that had lightly prodded my skin or a tiny shot at the doctor, uncomfortable at first and then gone. But the fact that a bee stung me for no reason was too much for this six-year-old to handle. I cried and sprinted inside the house, and that’s where I stayed the rest of the day. But it wasn’t just a day. My siblings played and swam outside all summer while I would stay behind, not wanting to encounter another bee. I only ventured a few yards from the house just in case I needed to bolt inside if a bee arrived. I never went swimming without standing guard by my window for five minutes to see if the coast was clear. I was becoming terrified of bees.

It worried everyone else, too. My dad came up with the first solution to my bee problem. He made homemade bug spray for me, telling me that the bees hated the smell and would stay away. For the rest of the summer, when I went swimming, I sprayed a bottle a day of that bug spray. Painstakingly, I sprayed it first on the grass, then high in the air, then in the middle of the air; then I re-coated the grass and the air. Then lastly, I covered myself in the bug spray. This went on for a couple of weeks. Finally, as the memory of my bee experience faded, I learned the lesson that every kid learns: A bee is small; you are big.

It started to feel unnecessary to spray 16 ounces of bug spray around the yard every time I went swimming. I slowly began to swim without the bug spray, and when I encountered a bee, I would simply hide under the water until my siblings killed it. To this day, six years later, I still have a fear of bees. I would love to kill a bee, but I can’t will myself to get close enough. I have this dream where a huge, oversized bee is inches away from my face, trying to attack me while my brother holds it back by its stinger; and all he has to do is let go, and I will die. Despite all the bee problems I still have, it could be worse…I could be spraying a bottle of bug spray around the yard every day before I swim.