We let them bite

Other potential titles for this post:

  • Why my husband slept on the couch for a week
  • Operation Bed Bug (for real)

Long post ahead…here goes…

Monday after Thanksgiving we woke up with a bunch of bites.  But we had an exterminator coming on Wednesday so we I didn’t fret too much.

Tuesday night Mike did some investigating, checking our bed with a flashlight.  I’m washing the dishes, talking to my sister on the phone when Mike calls “I think I found the culprit.  And I think we have bed-bugs.” He shows me a spot on the underside of the bed skirt, where there are three little black dots that look just like bed bug tracks. (Remember Operation Bed Bug?  That’s how he knew what to look for.) A lot of pacing, sighing, and maybe a little fighting ensued from there.

Wednesday I worked from home so I could be here when the exterminator was here, shed some light on our bites, and what we thought the cause might be.  I showed the exterminator the spot Mike had shown me the night before and said we thought it might be bed bugs. The property manager saw a tiny tiny clear bug walking on the bed skirt in the spot I showed them.  The exterminator caught the bug to take to the lab because it was too small to identify.  Both the exterminator and the property manager assured me that we didn’t have bed bugs, that we would know if we did.  We’d see them in the corners of the wall and in all the seams of the bed. We’d know what the culprit was when the mystery bug was identified in the lab that afternoon.

I’m a happy camper and call Mike at lunchtime to tell him that it’s not bed-bugs.  That the exterminator had checked our bed when he was out the week before and didn’t find any signs of them.  We are so relieved.

Then at 4:30 there’s a knock at the door.  It’s the property manager.  She says I’m sorry to tell you that the mystery bug was actually a baby bed bug.

Have you seen the Jimmy Kimmel video where the kids fall on the floor and start hysterically crying when their parents tell them they ate all their Halloween candy?  Yeah, that’s pretty much how I felt in this moment.

We were scheduled for our first bed bug treatment on Monday and given a packet of what we needed to do to prep our apartment. Here’s a list: wash and dry all clothes, bedding, and other fabrics in hot water and store in trash bags sealed tight; empty all drawers, bookshelves, closets; vacuum all floors; pull all furniture away from the wall.

We were headed to Florida for the weekend for my sister’s birthday so we both took of on Thursday to deal with all of this. And I’m so glad we did.

It was a crazy 48 hours. After $75 at the dry cleaner, 3-5 hours in the laundry room, a couple of arguments, and another night on the couch, we boarded a plane to Florida happy that our apartment was properly prepped for the treatment.

But it doesn’t end there.  We still have two treatments to go, nothing in our bedroom save some sheets on our bed (which, yes, we are sleeping in finally), and trash bags of clothes everywhere. We’re both paranoid in our own way: Mike asking me to use one of my pillows after his fell on the floor in the middle of the night and me wondering if bugs are jumping off me and onto the person next to me on the bus.

Looking forward to mid-January when this will all be over!