Monday, May 16, 2011

Uninvited Visitors

This is the post I knew deep down that Id eventually write.
I swore I never would. Id rather just forget it all together!
My mother insisted Id want to document it eventually.

Its been two weeks......Im slowly coming around....

My friend Sarah told me that I would one day laugh.
I wasnt at all sure I was going to survive and live to see the day that I could find humor in the situation.
While I still am not exactly laughing, at least I have stopped crying...

Two weeks ago as I was getting five kids up and dressed to leave the house for school at 6:45am. While combing Britain's hair, I made a discovery that made my skin crawl.

Lice.

The very word sends chills up my spine.
C got a phone call in Buffalo where he was on a trip from a hysterical wife.
Next the school nurse got a call from an extremely apologetic mother who was totally grossed out.
To which she graciously replied, "Oh honey, dont worry about it. Lice has been going through the second grade so your child isnt the one who brought it to school"

um.....excuse me....what?!?!

She explained that until there were a certain percentage of kids with lice, the policy is that they dont trouble parents with unnecessary information.
Glad to know my kids are only in the 10% infected with creepy crawlies and that it isnt a full blown epidemic.

Fabulous.

Just a show of hands....would anyone else like to know if lice is going through your childs classroom even if its a minority? I think Im going to volunteer for the PTO and try to legislate new policies next year.

I dragged everyone to the pediatrician to be examined.
Typically you must have over-the-counter treatments fail two times before you can qualify for prescroption strength lice shampoo. My pediatrician is a saint.
"I have less than three weeks before the new baby is born. I CANT wait for two failed attempts and brush through five heads of hair four times and risk it not working."
I all but pleaded.
She left the room and returned with prescriptions for enough shampoo to treat our entire family, rugs and cat too.
C returned home late that night to find kids sprawled all over the kitchen with plastic bags on their head and me leaning over Tristan at the kitchen sink with a microscope and a fine toothed comb.
By 1:30 am after endless hours of washing and drying and combing, my kids were begging to go to sleep....poor things!
42 bottles of toxic shampoo
16 loads of laundry
and two weeks of combing and it is safe to say.....our uninvited guests are officially gone.
....and so is my sanity!

13 comments:

Trini said...

Oh, Mrs. Smith....what an ordeal! I can't imagine getting lice..

Bethany said...

Oh. My. Word. You are a saint. I cannot imagine trying to deal with that at almost full term. I'm glad they are gone and you had a sympathetic dr.

The Simmons Family said...

Kamryn got lice the first of the year and it was awful. I was so thankful for Owen's buzzed cut...it was easy to see he wasn't infected. We did a 4 week treatment with olive oil to smother the lice. Kamryns hair was silky smooth at the end of her treatments, but what a pain!! I can't imagine having five heads to treat! You are a saint! Now I'm itchy. Ha. I guantee every time you do their hair, you will search for a bug here and there. I can't help myself.

Anonymous said...

I used to be a teacher, so some homeopathic remedies that I believe in are using coconut scented shampoo always, add a couple of drops of tea tree oil to your shampoo, you can spray bedding and all with a spray bottle of water with a few drops of tea tree oil mixed in. For adults I would actually rinse my hair in listerine (burns a bit, so I would not do on kids) whenever there was outbreaks of lice in my classroom. I taught 22 yrs of having my head down by kid heads and fortunately never experienced lice. Hopefully you will never have to go through this again, but just in case I truly swore by my remedies.

Carolina Carters said...

Oh NO!! You poor thing! I'm glad you got it all taken care of, although I sure HATE you had to experience it...especially with C out of town! ;)

I've "heard" that lice don't like "dirty" hair, so spray some hairspray in those heads every morning before sending them off!! :)

LishAlishAlis said...

Yikes! That's crazy. I'm a teacher and lice is one of those thing I dread. They gross me out. I had a student this year who had lice 6 times in the fall! Our policy at school is that as soon as one kid gets lice, we send a notice home to the entire class. I would want to know right away, so I could be on the watch for it. I think that's crazy. Lice spread like wildfire!!

Amanda said...

I was abroad working in England last year and at 22 years old got lice for the first time...I will say that the regular dosage of lice killer twice worked for me...though it was SUPER hard to get washed out of my hair [which is very long and very thick]. I ended up washing my hair about a dozen times after both treatments. I got it from trying on a hat...NEVER again! You are definitely a saint for taking care of all 5 heads!!!

Two Sisters, Two Brothers... One Very Busy Mother said...

I can totally relate. My boys came home with our home's first and hopefully only case last year. My friends recommended vaseline to smother them covered by the shower caps overnight and the very next day after rinsing they were gone. The school had the public health nurse re-check them and they were able to go right back to class just 24 hours later. They never returned!

Raymond said...

awhhh... Poor friend... If I couldn't hear your intonations and see the expressions on your face, this little tale wouldn't be nearly as funny.... not funny... but kinda...I mean... the way you tell it is funny. Most of all, the bottom photo of Izz & Ev... p r i c e l e s s !!! So glad your doctor was accommodating. Oh hey! Is there a pic with you with a plastic bag on your head? Would like to see that too please. :P love y'all

Lacey said...

Oh no! I can not imagine getting lice out of 5 kids hair and bedding! Wow, I would be beyond pissed too if the school hadn't called me!

Keightley said...

Oh no! I'm itching just reading this! I am so sorry you have had to act as an exterminator so close to baby time, but that picture with the bags on their heads made me laugh out loud!
Best wishes in the coming days!
Keightley

C~ said...

oh friend!!! i can totally relate...had our first bout this year too...weeks after Eli was born!! ...and the tears flowed. i don't know which i would pick just before baby or just after...um, neither! UGH. and our school has the same policy!! i emailed the teacher to let her know to protect against more of an outbreak and *nothing*. point for homeschooling.
so, so sorry.

daysease said...

OH! I so understand! We passed it in November, me and the kids. HORRIBLE time. I went into a mini depression and actually said I would rather have gone through the chicken pox again than to have lice. Ugh!!! So glad you are done with it!! Lord, protect her home and each head from the little creatures!!

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