Sunday, May 10, 2009

Don't let them bite

I spent Mother's Day in a way that is perhaps not typical.

My son was at his dad's place Saturday night, so I slept in (big time) and read Jane Eyre a bit and drank copious amounts of coffee and tried out my new bubble bath.

But then...

Gradually over the course of the morning, in emailing back and forth with my ex-husband about some little red itchy bumps I had noted on our son's skin a few days earlier, in watching lurid youtube videos and googling both sites and images for the keyword 'bedbugs' - I became paranoidally convinced that the house was infested.

This freaked me out and...

I spent the rest of the day in a frenzy of laundering every piece of fabric in the house, inspecting mattresses and boxsprings, vacuuming... and freaking out ever more.

I can't explain it - I didn't find any evidence of bedbugs, but the more I tore the place apart and laundered things, the more of a state I got into, and the more convinced I became that the little beasts were there and were somehow tricking me! I found one bug, which is not a bedbug, but I sealed it into a little plastic container to show to dad-of-son when he came for the drop-off, just because I felt that I needed someone else to say "Jen - this is not a bedbug".

Have I mentioned that I might have a bit of a phobic feeling when it comes to bugs? Not full-blown phobia, but several steps along that road. Bugs that suck your blood in the dead of night are kind of the ultimate horror. I started thinking about the vampire myths, I bet you anything that the concept of vampires is based on bed bugs, because, listen: leave you with tiny red puncture wounds (frequently in a line as they follow a vein), only come out at night and shun daylight, suck blood, invisible (practically) and difficult/impossible to eradicate...

Okay, denouement - dad-of-son brought pizza over and inspected all the mattresses, looked at the poor little bug in the container, said "Jen - this is not a bedbug. And I don't think you have them." My son took over the vacuuming and fastidiously vacuumed every crack, crevice and bit of fluff he could reach. I put the hot, freshly laundered sheets on the beds, and the three of us ate a huge pizza. Then we played some tunes and pretended we were flying in outer space.

I don't have bedbugs, my house is extraordinarily clean and smells of fresh laundry, my boy is soundly sleeping - and I'm happy. So I guess this was a happy mother's day!


Jen G said...

Got this via email from a friend who couldn't navigate the comment device: I'm in a similar mood and mode, spiders over here. Delicate ecological balance between keeping a few for flies and mosquitos, and smashing their ugly selves.
Go for it.

Monday afternoon update - this morning feared chickenpox but took kid to doctor and her diagnosis is spider (and not bed bug) bites from the sand at the park.

Anonymous said...

Good to know the "ex" is not an A____hole and still cares.

Jen G said...

I didn't know it was worrying anybody, but yes, my ex-husband is a great dad and we get along well.