Tuesday, October 16, 2012

Lice, Lice, Baby

Tonight's cocktail is a slug (or three) of straight bourbon, right out of the bottle, at 3:00 p.m. yesterday, just before the 7th load of laundry went in. Totally justified.



On Sunday night, right around bedtime, Tweak complained that his head had been itching "for days." So, I checked, and holy crap, the boy had lice! This meant that I spent all day applying pesticide, combing nits out of his hair, laundering every washable textile item in the house, shoving everything else into plastic bags, vacuuming, and ironing the damn beds, for crying out loud. Tweak did not like sending his 60 bajillion stuffed animals on a monthlong attic vacation, but he saw the crazed look in my eye and wisely didn't complain. I also treated myself and Tink, just in case (though the school nurse declared us clear). And Tweak is now rocking a buzz cut. Good times.

Picture courtesy of the CDC and my nightmares.
By the time it was almost all over, bourbon seemed necessary and reasonable. Of course, I told the school. Only a jackhole doesn't tell the school, by the way. I judge people for very few things, but concealing lice, being intentionally spiteful, and littering in national parks warrant a caning, in my book. Anyway. I waited all day for them to send this letter home, but they didn't. Instead it was the standard CDC info. Cowards.

This is our third round in 9 years. When people say that the little bastards are getting resistant to pesticides, I totally believe it. But I have to say that I took it remarkably well, all things considered. The first time, Tweak was 2.5 and Tink was 9 months old, and they both got it from Tweak's preschool. When I saw a bug crawl out of my baby girl's hair onto her forehead to die, I started twitching and trying not to scream. The second time was 3 months before I about lost my damn mind, so I was a bit tightly wound. There was a lot of crying and swearing, and at some point I remember running around the house with my hair covered in tea tree oil and swathed in Saran wrap. At the time, this seemed perfectly justifiable.

This time, I don't know if it was medication, or having a smaller house, or not having to keep my kids from inadvertently killing themselves while simultaneously doing a full Silkwood on the premises, but I actually didn't lose my shit. Last time, it felt like a very personal fuck you from the universe. This time? An unpleasant speedbump. And while all 3 times, I may have whispered, "Die, you chitinous little fuckers!" like a continuous mantra as I cleaned and laundered, at least I didn't feel like the lice were mocking me. Though if they were, they're dead, so WHO'S LAUGHING NOW, BITCHES??

Ahem.

Anyway, while I feel fairly Zen now, if anytime soon, you see a crazed woman running up the road in a bathrobe, with her head wrapped in Saran Wrap, dripping a trail of aromatic oils and making sounds only dogs can hear, you'll know we had a re-infestation. Until then, I'm going to call it a win.

8 comments:

  1. Great posting! Glad you were able to avoid a total meltdown over all of this -- that which has not killed you has truly made you stronger, and for that we can all be grateful. BTW, been there, bought the shirt(s) on lice infestations! After multiple/continuing bug wars, I finally started having P use Whole Foods tea tree oil shampoo regularly, and we never have had any further trouble. Just saying.

    I would also add one additional "caning" offense -- starting rumors blaming the most underprivileged kid in the class for a lice infestation. In our case, it was totally P and his head-to-head sharing buddy Z who infested the entire first grade, not the poor kid whose mom was doing her best to keep it together and so didn't need any flack from the mean mommy group.

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    1. The mean moms were definitely worthy of caning. Part of the reason I posted this was so that people facing it for the first time don't feel a stigma - lice do not discriminate!

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  2. You poor thing! You do seem totally zen. Who am I to argue with a saran wrapped tea oil dripping momma? ;) I'm gonna market a Silkwood like treatment for lice and become a bazillionaire. Ellen

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  3. OMGsh! I have so been in your shoes...At one point I wondered if I'd ever be able to hug my kids again without first checking their heads.

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    1. This is so true - I'm still doing a daily check just to be sure they're not back. Aaaand, now I feel itchy just thinking about it!

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  4. Hi! Jumping on board with the TGIF blog hop! Omg I SO hear you! My tribe haven't caught it yet this year but I can assure you that when they do, I wish I was a drinker!

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    1. Thanks for reminding me about the Hop! Just followed you back, and now I want to make sausage rolls a la your post.

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