This post is not for the faint of heart. Fair warning.
Does the title give you a hint? Yep. It's bad.
B and I have been making an effort to eat dinner at the kitchen table this week. Did you know that wicker furniture is bed bugs' favorite spot to hide? Did you also know that when they bite you, you don't feel it at first, and that the bites don't show up or itch for several hours? True story.
So, basically, I sat in a nest of bed bugs for over an hour last night, and the night before, while eating dinner. Yesterday morning I woke up with maybe 10 bites on my rear end and was so confused- how did mosquitos bite me on the backside, through clothes? Further, how did they bite me ten times in that place without me noticing?
Then, last night at dinner, I happened to see one of the bugs. I immediately jumped up, shocking Ben. He jumped into Jack Bauer mode, banging the chair on the ground sideways until a few bugs fell out. He grabbed 5 using tweezers and put them in a plastic bag. He thought they were ticks, so I immediately checked everywhere for ticks and then took a shower. Whew, that must've caused my bites yesterday, I thought- gross. Threw out the kitchen wicker chairs, thought everything was now fine.
The Haitians we live with all knew the French/Kreyol word for the bug but weren't able to spell it or remember it in English, but eventually we figured out (thank you, Wiki Translate) that they thought it was bed bugs, not ticks. Gross, we thought. Hope it's not anywhere else in the house. Armed with internet research on how to detect bed bugs' presence, we stripped our bed and searched our mattress- no signs anywhere. Relief.
Then I woke up this morning. Ben rolled over first, looked at me, and gasped. He leapt out of bed.
Between my lower back and thighs, I have over 100 bites on my backside. They're uncountable. There is a big place, larger than my hand, where the bites are so dense they are indistinguishable from each other- just a giant red itchy welp. I was horrified. Afraid, disgusted, mad, horrified. There are also big strings of bites (bed bugs' bite pattern is in a straight line, along blood vessels) on the outside of both feet and ankles, because, joy of joys, I was sitting cross-legged for awhile in that damned chair.
Just writing this makes me want to cry. You can't imagine. I am already highly reactive to mosquito bites and wear very high percentage DEET spray every day because they itch and turn purple on me so badly. This is 100 times worse. It's also gross, and humiliating...
My internet research tells me bed bugs spread no diseases, so that's a relief. We've searched closely every other upholstered surface and can't see signs of any others- PRAY hard the bugs were contained to that one chair. For now, I'll be living in a benadryl haze and re-applying prescription cortisone cream like a junkie.