Throwing Away Pie Pans

We were newly married and lived in the sweetest and smallest apartment you’ve ever seen. Our kitchen was 7 square feet, and that’s pushing it. But I loved our cracker box home because it was our first, and less square footage means less cleaning.

One night as we were getting ready for bed we heard a strange noise coming from below the window. Why does clanking sound scarier at night? My brave husband went outside but didn’t see anything.

The next day I investigated and found a foil pie pan inside the vent under our building. I threw it away and felt satisfied knowing I had solved our noise problem.

Only I hadn’t solved our problem because we heard the same clanking noise again at bedtime accompanied by scratching and now meowing. The next morning when I checked there was ANOTHER pie pan. Ummmm….are ya’ll freaking out yet? I had a mini panic attack because it felt super creepy knowing someone had been outside my bedroom window in the last 24 hours and not only that, they had replaced the pie pan!

I packed our tiny apartment in three hours and called my husband insisting we HAD to move because I was not about to die at the hands of a pie pan killer. Actually what I did was throw the second pie pan away and set up a sting operation.

Late in the afternoon I heard rustling and footsteps outside our porch. I waited until the noises stopped and quietly slid open the door. A quick look under the vent revealed a THIRD pie pan and it was full of cat food.

I looked down the parking lot and saw a little old lady with a tall bag. I watched in shock as she visited nearly every apartment in the back of the complex, putting cat food in pie pans under the vents.
What. the. what.

I’m usually not a confrontational person. But Granny had crossed the line. I grabbed the pie pan and followed her. I started the conversation with a sweet tone.

“Excuse me, ma’m. Is this yours?”

No response.

“Ma’m, are you feeding cats under the buildings?”

No response.

She just stared at me looking guilty. And sad. But also a little bit crazy and scary.

I handed her the pan and said in my firmest tone, “Stop feeding the cats under our home. I’m going to tell on you.” Then I walked home and called the apartment manager.

We never saw a cat, a pie pan or the crazy cat lady again.

It’s been 15 years since I confronted the cat lady. Off and on I have thought about this story and laughed. We no longer live in a shoe box and I no longer hear scratching at night. But other things are trying to keep me awake and disrupt my life.

Lies that tell me I’m not patient enough with my kids. Not talented enough to write. Not working enough with Jack. Not _________ enough. I could fill in the blank with so many negative thoughts. I know you could too.

It doesn’t matter what we throw away today. New lies will come tomorrow.

We have a choice to make. Are we satisfied to keep throwing away pie pans, or are we gonna tell Granny to hit the road? And if we are ready to confront this head on, how do we do so?

For me, saying Bible verses has been the most affective way to silence the lies in my head. I read it, memorize it and then pray it out loud.

You are my refuge and my shield;
    your word is my source of hope.
Psalm 119:114

I am always aware of the Lord’s presence; he is near, and nothing can shake me.
Psalm 16:8

The enemy of our soul is a liar. His job is to make noise in our minds and steal our peace.
Speaking the truth will shut him down every time.

I’m ready to give the devil back his pie pans and his janky cat food and his awful lies.
Anyone else with me?

pie pans

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