Tuesday, October 9, 2007
We Share Everything
Even lice. As mentioned in a previous post, all my kids sleep together in the bottom bunk. It's great for bodily warmth and brotherly love, but it is not good for containing lice!
7:30AM While getting the kids ready for school this morning, I started to comb my oldest daughter's hair and realized that she had lice. I stood in the bathroom for nearly a minute, repeating over and over, "OK. OK. OK. OK." I was trying to figure out my plan of attack and if I could still get her to her morning doctor's appointment (that we scheduled back in July). I ran downstairs and called my husband as he was on his way to work. (Luckily he had his cell phone with him, there are days when I call him on his cell, only to hear it ringing in the other room.) I practically shouted, "I need you to come home RIGHT NOW!" I explained the situation to him and he turned around and headed for home. I quarantined all children to the bathroom until I could de-louse them. I started the process of stripping the beds, bagging the stuffed animals and pillows and gathering all the laundry to be washed in HOT water.
8:20AM My husband arrives home with $100 worth of RID, the shampoo treatment for lice. We begin the tedious process of washing and combing out the nits. LOADS of fun.
10:00AM Both the boys and my husband are lice-free, whew! But we treat their hair anyway. Both girls have lice and combing through their long hair is my job. Meanwhile, my own head is itchy but I cannot treat it until after I've finished with the girls.
10:15AM Treatment on oldest daughter was not successful. (My husband treated her hair and did not follow the directions properly, so I had to do it again. That is why it is MY job to comb out the nits. If I left it up to him, we'd end up shaving their heads to get rid of the lice. But wasn't he great to come home and help? I mean that.) At this point, oldest daughter starts freaking out. She was shouting, "I am the most unluckiest person in this house and maybe in the whole world! I don't like bugs that get in your hair! I only like NICE bugs! WHYYYYYYYYYYY do they have to be in my HAAAAAAIR????? This stuff smells REALLY bad and now I am going to smell bad ALL DAY!" At this point I calmly point out that I probably STILL have bugs in my hair because I am spending all my time getting them out of everyone else's hair. I also tell her that when Grannie was a little girl, if a child got lice, they had to have their heads shaved to get rid of it. (True. Have you read Angela's Ashes?) I also tell her that she is very lucky to have a mom at home who can get rid of them for her and lucky to have a dad who could come home from work to help. I remind her that if this happened on Thursday, instead of today, it would ruin our trip to Great Wolf Lodge so I tell her to STOP complaining! And she does. (Note: the Drama Queen was not at all dramatic during the de-lousing process.)
At some point while my husband and I were busy de-lousing, our sons were busy too. They got the knife sharpener (at least they didn't get a knife, right?) and dug a hole in the bunk bed. (See photo. Notice wood shavings on floor.) When my husband discovered this and asked, "What happened?!" Our 4 year old son said, "Uh, Dad. I think the bugs got in there and made a big hole!" Clever. But still worthy of a Time Out.
11:00AM All clear. All lice and nits removed from all heads. At least I hope so. I relied on my husband to check my head. He wondered aloud how he could see anything in my head of hair. Then he said, "You have really lovely hair, honey." And my oldest daughter (who was helping him spot nits) said, "Mommy. I think he is really trying to say that your hair is a tangled mess." Yes, she is very perceptive.
11:05AM My husband heads to the laundermat with 2 kids and about 15 loads of laundry.
11:10AM My husband calls to say he forgot the detergent and asks me to leave it on the porch so he can come pick it up.
11:25AM My husband calls to say that he needs $3 more dollars. I say I will be there in 20 minutes (I'm not dressed, neither is my 2 year old and I need to go to an ATM.) He says nevermind, he'll get it himself and hangs up on me.
11:30AM My husband calls to ask why he has 2 kids with him at the laundermat? Like I know. Didn't he take them? He claims I told them to go with him. (But surely he knew they were getting into the car with him, right?)
11:32AM My husband drops the 2 kids off. They come inside and tell me, "Dad is mad. He parked somewhere that you're not allowed to park and some man came out and talked to us. But then he let us park there."
11:40AM I am finishing this post and want to sincerely apologize to those of you who have had contact with the Lousy Langans in the last few days. We would not knowingly spread lice.