In 2006, my daughter, my boyfriend and I all got infected with what turned out to be Collembola. We did not live together at the time, but right around the time we started having symptoms we had worked all day at my house pulling up my old wall to wall carpet and putting it into the back of a pick up truck. It was a really hot day and we all were dripping sweat the entire day. We all sat on my couch in the midst of the work to drink cold water. What I did not know was that my daughter probably brought the problem with her that day. Within days my boyfriend and I were in hell with crawling and biting and itching. My daughter did not feel anything for a long time.
She had come to me a month or so earlier asking me to look at a rash on her upper back. Since I have been consulting on preventative health for over 40 years, I could tell it was not something she was reacting to from her healthy diet.
I remember thinking it looked like something coming from her environment and asked if she was using different laundry soap. She had what looked like pimples; some with white centers some just looked like mosquito bites. They did not itch so I did not think anything more about it. She told me later that the damp house she moved in to just before she got that had a previous tenant that had some kind of serious skin condition.
Now looking back it appears likely that my daughter had this from the house she moved into. She gave it to us when she sweat on our couch the day she was helping with the carpet. She lived in that house with her boyfriend who never got anything.
The problem started with both my boyfriend and me having something itching across the upper center of our backs almost in the exact same place; right where our backs hit the couch. It was uncanny that it was in the spot that was hardest for us to reach. That was the beginning of the nightmare of feeling I was being eaten alive. The other possible sources were the feral cats that appeared in my yard right around that time and the Pergo floor I helped install.
The flooring had a strange brown powder all over it and I just thought it was dust from manufacturing. Since I eventually saw the Collembola coming up through the cracks in the brand new flooring I also suspected the flooring. When I called the company I bought it from they did tell me that it came from a warehouse in New Orleans and I flashed that it had somehow been infested from the flooding there. I still can not be sure where the Collembola came from or how long after being exposed symptoms occurred.
I sent samples of specimens to the Hawaii State Health Department that I caught on clear packing tape (held 5 inches above the floor over a few hours that I then taped across a container so as to not crush it) and their laboratories called me to tell me that what I had sent them was positively identified as Collembola. They informed me that although I told them I collected the samples from my new laminate flooring, my skin and my sheets (also using tape) they insisted they do not bite or live in a house and are not parasitic. They told me they normally eat decaying leaves and fungus and would not be found in a clean environment. So much for help from the Health Dept.
We studied Collembola on the internet and found out that they are prolific, more resilient than even cockroaches, and have been found in the Arctic as well as in active lava tubes. This was bad news because that just told us why extremes in heat did not affect them.
In desperation, my boyfriend and I tried everything we could get our hands on since we could not live with the torture. In all we spent over $15,000 trying things.
First we called some pest control companies and were told that nothing worked for this kind of problem. One company did say that someone was helped by sealing their house up and running an air conditioner all the time. This was a clue that maybe they were airborne. One pest control company told me that they had run across it in 2 other homes where just the babies were being bit. One was in a family of 5 other people who were not affected.
Since I was once pesticide poisoned (see Megan's Story on All Natural Pest Control) we called a non toxic pest control company. After spraying with Kleen Free enzyme from Genesis, Q-Based Detergent and environmental products, and having Flea Busters treat with a supposedly non-toxic powder, we were still completely under attack. This eco-friendly pest control told me that I would need to borrow carpets to hold the powder they were planning to use and that I would have to leave it down for a month. I had brand new Pergo laminate flooring now and no carpet. They put powder all over my bed and saturated all the rugs I had borrowed to cover all my floors.
This treatment cost $500 and did nothing except create a big mess I had to clean up on top of all the laundry, no sleep etc.
Things were really bad. Of course they would not guarantee their treatment for mites so I lost that money too. I even had them come back before I knew it did not work and paid another $35 to treat 2 file boxes with papers I was going to seal and store with the powder in it (BTW, I was re-infested upon opening these boxes a year later).
At this point I could not work, I was suffering so much and I did not want to spread what ever I had. We began doing Internet research and trying everything you could ever imagine. If you think of something, I have more than likely tried it in the 2 ½ years of this nightmare. This research was even more agonizing since my computer area seemed to be the worst spot that I was attacked except for my bed. I lit incense and candles trying to keep from being attacked while I did research most times late into the night. I could always tell when the candle or the incense was gone because I was immediately attacked. It was clear that this "thing" did not like strong smells and was a bug since all bugs fear fire and smoke.
We found Q Based Solutions and they sold us $500 worth of stuff which we were overjoyed to pay if it worked. They told me it was 100% money back guarantee and sold me what was specifically made by them for Collembola. Nothing I got from them worked. When I tried to get my money back they told me that they guarantee everything EXCEPT for Collembola. They even told me that there was no cure for Collembola. BOY was I MAD. I felt really angry since we were still suffering and now out the money too. Their enzyme we used on our floors made the skin on our feet peel. I could taste it in my mouth when I bathed in it as they recommended. That is a bad sign as well since it is the same as drinking it if it absorbs to that degree.
The Q-Based Solutions products affected us in other harmful ways. We all got respiratory damage from it. We had thick mucous from our noses and were coughing for a week in reaction to spraying or mopping with this product. Not fun when you are already suffering.
We bought the LadyBug steamer thinking that we could sterilize the environment. The theory was a good one but there is way too much margin of error. If the edges of anything we steamed did not get hot enough it would increase the problem since we had figured out that the problem was somehow activated by moist heat. It did work the best of anything before we found the CedarCide.
I found a site where a man had Collembola and claimed he could control it with diet. Since I have been a health consultant I wanted to know what he had discovered. I bought his book for $30. The diet he recommended would positively give you cancer and or a heart condition and diabetes.
I know from helping many overcome cancer that getting rid of the bug only to end up with cancer is not a wise option. I also know that a healthy strong immune system is critical to preventing every disease and his diet is the opposite of my experience. (See my book Don't Pollute Your Own Stream on building a healthy immune system in TREATMENTS).
I had been really strong most of my life swimming in the ocean, doing yoga daily (see recent video on my MySpace) and eating almost all raw organic foods since my teens. Since I never got sick, with even a cold, not being able to get over this was very surprising to me. I literally made getting over it my full time job.
My boyfriend put Diatomaceous Earth on his wall to wall carpet in his apartment and that seemed to help. He was also spraying bleach on things. He got over it in 6-months. I was not so lucky. Of course now I had to stay away from him because I could not bear the thought of giving it back to him.
Since all the doctors we tried knew nothing and would not help, we finally accepted the grim fact that if there was to be a cure it was up to us to find it. During those first 6 months we got a microscope that worked through a computer so we could study what we found. I was almost insane using tape all the time trying to catch something and looking at the tape with different magnifying glasses that I had that went up to x 25 to see if it would be then something to put in the microscope.
After creating the original web site in 2008 to warn others not to waste time and money on what I had tried that did not work, someone contacted me about the CedarCide product. (this new website created in May 2010 has now replaced that one)
When I read about how it had been invented for mites that the military could not get rid of I had hope. At that point I believed that this was some deviation from the natural order of life either a genetically modified thing or a bio warfare thing. The fact the CedarCide had created their product for the military for mites that even straight malathion would not kill added to my suspicion that this had been created by the military to use in the middle east that came back with the solders and spread. I also thought that maybe genetically modified plants have also affected this bug since I read that Collembola are the first to break down a human corpse. Why they would be so out of whack in the natural order and attack a living person was baffling.
It also was starting to be obvious that people with clean internal systems were more attractive to this than those who lived on meat and junk food. This is really strange since usually in nature the diseases are attracted to prune out the weakest of the species. Maybe parasites are different than bugs in that way? Also based on the surveys I have collected females and older men are more prone to this. Out of hundreds of cases no young men to date have contacted me with it. I believe this means that Collembola is attracted to certain hormones and high testosterone may be a repellent. This needs more research.
I developed the protocol found on this site from trial and error and experimenting on myself at great expense and suffering. I am greatly rewarded when a fellow victim tells me they are well or improving daily. It makes it all somehow worth the effort I made for myself to save others too.
The happy ending to this story is that after 2-1/2 years of struggle I found my way out of the hell and have a normal life again. I even wear the same clothes for a week at a time just to celebrate that I can now do that. I never thought there would be so much joy in such a strange thing as using a towel for a week and changing sheets no more than once a week.
I recently got to have my 17-month granddaughter stay at my house for 10-days and was so grateful that she was not in any danger of getting the plague I had suffered with for so long. To take hot bubble baths with her and cuddle her in my arms was something I could not imagine during my struggle. I am in gratitude even being able to type this letter unmolested by any irritating menace since it had been excruciating to be at my computer for all those years of torture.
My prayer is that you, who by the grace of God have found me, will follow the protocol I have sacrificed so much of my life energy to create and lead yourself back into a peaceful life as well. Then I hope you too will care enough to contribute in some way to helping those still out there suffering from this nightmare. Until we are all free from this we must reach out to those in need or we did not deserve the help we got which in my opinion came from sincere prayers for help to heal this in myself and others.
Peace to You,