I inherited 3 things from my mother's side of my family. The "Kurth Curse" or the tenancy to get fat, hypoglycemia, and severe "jumpiness". It is the last which concerns us today.
My mother and all her sisters, and to the best of my knowledge, all their daughters, share this trait. Startle us, walk up behind us and then speak, and we hit the ever-loving ceiling. It seems to be an overenthusiastic adrenalin response; what would normally merely surprise a normal person scares the pants off of one of us. It's as disturbing as it is unchangeable. It also leaves the sufferer open to some rather pointed ridicule.
Today was a rough one. Little girls were being truculent. The Boy was a complete spaz. I had this headache I couldn't get rid of.
By 8:30, kids were outta my hair. I had a glass of wine and was deeply absorbed in a Wikipedia article at my desk, when without warning, Cameron spoke, directly behind me. I almost had a goddamn heart attack. I shrieked like a bedlamite, Cameron started laughing his ass off and Miles came to see what the hell. With what dignity I could muster, I took myself and my glass of wine to the shower, hoping the quiet and warmth would be soothing to my pounding heart.
So. There I was, rocking in the calming spray, far, far away in my own head. Warm water, so nice....
A few inches from my closed eyes, Miles spoke.
Again, there was the shrieking. Thank goodness I wasn't actually holding my wine glass at the time.
The moral of the story? Lock the damn door!