nit.

Few times in my life have I felt like a social pariah.  There was the time I was visiting the apple orchard with the kids just after having Tess and discovered I had hemorrhaged and had blood running down my legs.  And the morning that Grant got a sucker at the pediatricians office and then ran with it, falling and causing a def con three alarm throughout the office.  But I think this takes the cake.  This taking my kids to the salon for haircuts and discovering head lice. I thought it was peanut butter from lunch.  Have to think that still in order to keep my skin from crawling. This is the grossest thing we’ve ever encountered.  Finding it on a Small was bad enough, hours spent treating and combing them all (“I don’t care if you aren’t itchy, we are a family and we’ll do this together”) but then the obsessive thoughts got the better of me late late and I made Dan check my head.

This is Vinnie.  I’m sorry if this grosses you out people, but you should have been tipped off by the name of the blog.  I’m officially disgusted by myself.  Have combed my own head until my scalp is literally bleeding.  Dan tried to do it, but he doesn’t have the stomach for that kind of work, setting off a snarky comment from me.  I birthed four of your children and you can’t comb the nits out of my hair?  He suggested I just go get my hair cut short.  It’ll grow back, he said.  I tried to inform him calmly that the health department prohibits it. At this point my rising hysteria took over and I think I may have blacked out for a bit.  When I came to I was full of questions like, Why this parasite?  Why not worms?  The kind characterized by unexplained weight loss and runny stool.
Texting my sisters and mom was not actually helpful.  Just sent everyone running for their combs, texting me back pics of things they’d found in their hair.  Ummm, I think that’s just part of your dinner mom.  No, there are not lice having unprotected sex in your hair.  It’s nearly 11, just throw some teeny condoms and cigarettes at them and go to bed.
As of now, we have are lice free.  I have eschewed sleep in favor of feeding the washing machine.  You’re right Rachel, I should have just hit the laundromat.  Sigh.  But at least we have this: every soft guy we own is tied up in trashbags in the basement-good riddance.  Every pillow we sleep on is in the trash-good riddance. And every piece of bedding is in piles awaiting their turn with the sanitize cycle.  I have vacuumed all the mattresses and around the beds, washed every hat we own (except the ones I threw away) and put caution tape over the drawer holding our hair pretties.  The kids are all sleeping peacefully without lovies.  Without pillows even.  On bare mattresses like refuges from a boarding school.  We are not messing around.  We are on full alert here.  We are not messing around.

Today will find us combing each other’s hair and brainstorming ways to make having lice cool.  So far all we have is this: Lice: it’s the new black, which won’t probably speak to our target audience of 1-5th graders.  Until we come up with a better campaign slogan, we’re taking our cues from the primates.  This is our new family hobby.

This is me being real.  I’ll pick them, but I’m not eating them.

5 Replies to “nit.”

  1. Oh no!
    But seriously, lice is EVERYWHERE this year. I've spent a few lunch breaks checking heads at my school. We've seen lots of kids coming to school with SHORT hair 🙂 And I've gotten emails that it's been at Asa's school. Every teacher friend has said it's at their school too. It's everywhere! I've even had my head checked because just the word lice makes my head itch.
    There is a lice boutique here in GR that will check your head and rid you of lice, for a handsome fee, of course. It's called Rapunzel's boutique (or something close to that). I think they have shampoo that claims to help prevent lice as well, I'll be honest that I've thought of buying it a few times!
    Good luck killing the little nuisances and keeping them away for good!
    Rebekah

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  2. I was awake all night thinking of the lice having a sleepover in my bed, and choosing my pillow to play charades on.

    i made Jennifer check my head in the parking lot of Maries after breakfast this morning, and I'm still not sure I believe her announcement of “all clear!”

    I still love you deep, head lice and all

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  3. Megan – I am a friend of Ana Gronsman's and Bradi Kreider's – our kids school (Caledonia) is riddled as well – I use Melaleuca's original shampoo – the tea tree oil repels lice…..really.
    Anne Calhoun

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  4. Bekah, I have heard of Rapunzels. Even called them this weekend but they were closed. Hope you and your clan can stay clear of the little buggers this year.
    Bed bugs…don't get me started. Totally freak me out. Feel much better now that we have all new pillows and cases around here, but am committed to traveling with my own pillow for the rest of my life. Makes my skin craw just thinking of it.
    Anne, am ordering a case of that shampoo right now. May just soak the kids heads in tea tree oil for good measure. Who cares if they go to school smelling like a commune? It's worth the social stigma. Thanks for the tip!

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