Lice, the Unwelcome Guest

I recall the letters we used to get in primary school informing parents of the uninvited visitors at school when they actually meant: “The school has lice! Check your kids and sort them out before the teachers get them too!” Well visitor is putting it mildly! It’s more like that uninvited family member who comes over and stays indefinitely!

This past week saw me hosting a colony of lice brought home from school by my lovely little princess!

She had been complaining that her scalp was itchy….I checked and couldn’t see anything! Maybe I was in denial….says me scratching my head as I type this blog!

On closer inspection, after she told me she saw something crawl in her parting, I saw that she was infested!!!

My first thoughts in this particular order were: “How is it possible? What will people say? Don’t tell them!!!! They’ll think she’s dirty! No wait…you have to tell them otherwise my child will get it again!!! Ok…so tell the teacher and blame the school!! Get to a pharmacy…now!!!!”

After going to the pharmacy and asking the assistant behind the counter in a very soft voice, where I can find lice stuff, he answered in a not so soft voice: “Let me take you to the isle. We have stuff that kills lice on contact!” I told him I’d find it, he mustn’t worry. I saw how he was going to discuss my situation with me all the way to the isle and thereby informing random people, who were none the wiser before, of my crisis! I didn’t want people to now stand a mile away from me. That would definitely feed all my insecurities.

I opted to buy every product on the shelf that said non-toxic, in case one didn’t work. Fine tooth come, eliminating gel x 3, shampoo and maintenance spray in hand I set off to war.

Then the task started! And boy did I not know what I was in for! I chose the tea tree option! The treatment was twice a day for three days. My days consisted of driving home after work, putting lice and nit eliminating gel on my daughters hair, combing it with the comb and wiping it off on a piece of toilet paper, shampooing her hair, drying it, putting maintenance spray on, putting the kids to bed, getting up early, repeat lice treatment, get them ready for school, drop them off at school, go to work! Homework was done in between!

The lice treatment took about 2 hours at a time! It took a lot of encouragement and progress updates to keep my daughter from crying non-stop. Every time I told her it’s looking good or we’re almost done, she’d respond: “We hope so!”

But wait, let’s rewind! I’m making it sound easy…..

What I didn’t tell you was that the first night while I was eradicating the lice on my daughter’s hair, I started itching, obviously in sympathy! Not! When I checked the mirror, 4 of the buggers crawled into my hair whilst evacuating the mother ship!! So after I completed my daughter’s treatment I had to do my hair as well!

The following morning after treating my hair, I asked Superdad to just quickly check my son’s hair to ensure that he’s clean. Dad’s feedback after combing through my son’s hair like a baboon looking for bugs to feast on: “No there’s no lice, only one flea!” What???!? So the one flea ended up being 3 lice that also decided that my little boy would be a much friendlier host than his sister, who was exterminating their dwelling.

After dad was also checked, linen was nuked and heads were treated for 3 days, I am proud to announce that our family is officially nit and lice free!!! (Sound the trumpets!!!!)

Except for the emotional scarring, the excessive amount of water usage and time spent, we have emerged on the other side unscathed!

People still scratch their heads and giggle when I walk past their offices but I am sure that will soon be forgotten…In princess’ words: “We hope so!”


Happy scratching!





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