I wish I was an inventor, and I could invent a contraption that you just scan over your head and it would, with 100% accuracy indicate whether or not you had a lice situation. And the second version of that would have a screen that detailed how many live bugs and how many nits. And the third version would tell you the degree of nit you had: newly laid, about to hatch, empty. And the fourth version would tell you the names of your lice and their family tree.
And I would be rich.
But seriously, here’s the thing. I do check the kids heads, probably once a month when there is no obvious itching or news of someone in the class with lice. When there IS news of lice in the class, and when I know the child is friends with my child, I am on high alert, checking right away.
Like last week, a friend was diagnosed with lice so I did a quick check in the morning before school and found what I believe could have been/probably was 1 nit. That afternoon, with more time on my hands I did a more thorough check and only found a dead louse sitting on top of Lolly’s head, and that’s it. I found this to be weird and mysterious, but also believed that if there is a lice problem at the school, that it is not totally out of the question that a dead louse from somewhere in the school could have flown onto Lolly’s head.
I checked her off as lice-free and went on my trip.
This morning she had an itch and so I followed it and THOUGHT I saw something moving, but it could have been dandruff too, so I got out my hair dryer for a quick check (this is how I found lice on Phoebz last summer, I started blow drying her hair and bugs started crawling out of her scalp. ew), and I swear something went flying out of her hair, but I have no idea what that was. I decided to just do a proper check.
I found 1 very mature nit.
Obviously, there is a lice problem at school. Obviously, Lolly is at the beginning or pre-beginning stage of POSSIBLY having lice right now. So, what do I do? Check EVERY DAY? Wait a week so that when I check maybe I will find more than just one nit? Because honestly, after having checked 3 out of 4 sections of hair and finding nothing, to find 1 nit in the last quadrant, makes me think: Did I miss something in the other 3? Where is the bugger that laid this thing? Was that the dead louse I found? Did he just lay his very last egg and then give up the ghost? Must I check every three days and drive us all batty? How often should I wash those @#($& sheets?
And I also just want to shave her head.
And frankly, there is little time in our schedule for lice checking. Now everything is off for the day because Lolly didn’t get her practicing done this morning, she was in the hot seat. And then Jason checks my head, and bless the man for trying, but I am thinking: he isn’t really doing this right. AND! I don’t think other parents in the school take this as seriously as I do, so the problem is just going to continue. AND! it is difficult on a body to bend and twist so that your head lamp is in just the right position for optimal lice/nit-viewing, and with a 4 pound baby having her Pickle Party in your abdomen, it does make it more difficult.
The other night I was telling Jason that he works very hard to earn his income. However, if we are going to compare the proportion of dollar signs to the amount of “work” we do, whenever lice is on the table, my proportions are much more skewed than his (especially since my paycheck lately has been quite low compared to previous years). Oh Pickle, I forgive you (pregnant people aren’t that castable see?) and you are my favorite daughter because you don’t have lice. yet.