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Bed Bugs Strike Brooklyn

We're bugging out...literally.

So...we have bed bugs. Oh, don't look at me like I have the plague or something. We live in New York City. These things are everywhere in this city and apparently now everywhere in our building too -- a nice little tidbit our landlord failed to mention until we discovered the infestation (or should I say, until we started itching). And so if you've ever had bed bugs before, you'll know I'm not even being the least bit dramatic when I say we're living in our own personal hell right now.

The nightmare began with an itchy rash that we both tried to ignore, and now we're packing up the entire contents of our apartment (at least what we haven't thrown out) into plastic trash bags (like a couple of hobos) and cleaning every inch of our tiny space (which, oddly enough, feels way bigger when you're looking for sesame-seed-size bugs that nibble at you in your sleep -- gross, I know). I can't tell you how much time we've wasted drying our clothes on the highest heat possible (to really make sure those buggers are toast. Did I mention this is after we suffocated them by sealing them along with our crap in plastic garbage bags for a few days?). And then there's the cost -- including the hotel room we had to stay in while the exterminator got to work fumigating the place, the crap we had to throw out and replace (and we're not just talking sheets, people -- our mattress was just one of many major bed bug casualties), and, of course, the bottles of hydrocortisone cream. And it's not like I even felt safe in the hotel -- haven't you heard about all the people who've gotten bed bugs while on vacation? Btw, you can also get bed bugs at work, according to this Nestie post. Um, yeah. I'm now obsessively Googling for everything I can find out about bed bugs, so sorry if that was news to you and you're now feeling paranoid and starting to itch. Why didn't we just head to our home upstate, you ask? Good question. Apparently, these guys travel, and I wasn't about to have both our homes infested.

But I point in talking about our bug problem, other than to vent about how bad it S-U-C-K-S? Bear with me while I go a little Pollyanna on you and tell you about the upside I've discovered in all this: Having such an annoying (albeit small) common enemy has really brought Jack and I together as a team and reminded me how good we are together. Listen, it's not like tensions haven't run high at times -- a gnarly rash combined with no sleep doesn't exactly put Mama (or Jack, for that matter) in the best of moods. But sometimes it takes a sucky situation when it feels like you against the world (or at least the creepy-crawly world) to remember how great you are as a team. So I guess in that sense, bed bugs have been a good reminder of how nice it is to have a partner when the shidt hits the fan.

So, what about you? Any of you ever have bed bugs? This post on boards about how hard it is to get rid of bed bugs didn't exactly make me feel any better about everything, but at least I'm not alone, right? And ever find that a sucky sitch actually brought you guys closer? Come on, make me feel better!

-- Holly

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