I talked to the woman down the hall tonight, and she said that she’s seen 4 or 5 live bugs in her apartment since the thermal treatment. She’s killed them, but she doesn’t know how many more are still in there, and is feeling really hopeless.
She told me her history with this, and how, when the woman who got kicked out’s apartment got really bad because she didn’t report it, her apartment’s problem skyrocketed. She said that her boyfriend would lie on his mattress and countless bugs would swarm over to him, and she’d spray them all with rubbing alcohol. Her walls were a mess because of all the bug feces and the smashed bugs. She’d see 30 or 40 of them at a time, in all stages of their life cycle. So for her, seeing 4 or 5 at a time is an exponential improvement, even though it’s still depressing that the thermal treatment didn’t work 100%.
And here am I, with my never-more-than-probably-10-bugs-during-the-worst-of-it, freaking out. How on earth she’s managed, I have no idea. If my apartment EVER had as many as hers did, I would break my lease, abandon my apartment, leave everything in it, and never look back. I couldn’t POSSIBLY deal with that on a daily basis for months at a time. Fuck this real estate company… I can’t believe they let her suffer like that for so long. She’s so strong, and she’s the nicest person… It’s unconscienable that she has to go through this. No one should, but it’s just so much worse when it’s awesome social workers who spend their lives trying to help people.
I closed my door and looked at my apartment differently after we talked. My problem is so, so small, and though I can’t do anything about the proportion of the trauma I feel, I can take more tangible comfort in the fact that it hasn’t been worse. I’ve said it before, but I will never, EVER know how people cope with massive infestations. And I’m thanking my lucky stars tonight and every night that I didn’t have to this time.
Again, the thought of moving comes. And again, the doubts. I’ll need to sit with that one for a while. I haven’t gotten my renewal thing yet–maybe it’s a 60-day-prior and not 90, like I thought. But even so, my lease is up June 1, so the 60-day would have been Saturday…