Thursday, October 9, 2008

Head Lice


So, Rhys bumped his head pretty bad on the swingset on Monday (DH's birthday) and cut his head open pretty bad. As it turns out this was a good thing. In applying pressure to his head (after finally finding the cut through his thick hair) I noticed something - LICE. I don't usually see Rhys' scalp due to the fact that he has extraordinarily thick hair and he hadn't complained about itching but there they were.

So, I checked Alistair and he had them pretty bad too. I know that they're pretty common around here but I just wanted to (and still want to) vomit just thinking about it. To think of tons of little parasites crawling around on my sweet little ones just thoroughly disgusts me.

It also partially ruined Derek's planned birthday evening as we spent our bedtime/post dinner hours coating the children with an essential oil and olive oil mixture, and then dousing their hair with vinegar to loosen the eggs, rather than getting to be cute married people. Rhys fell asleep before we could do the vinegar rinse and we had to wake him up. He babbled incoherently while we cleaned his head off and combed out as much as we could that night. Alistair screamed and cried, it was like torture to him.

On Tuesday morning I checked them and myself again and sure enough found that we didn't get all the lice. So, I went ahead and called the only two families that we've hung out with in the past week (okay so one we had to stop off by because we don't have their phone # but we kept our distance). I cut the kid's hair off pretty short and took the hair outside far away from the house. I cancelled our weekly trip to the library because I wouldn't want to infect every toddler in town, and then went to get some Mayo and the official "Lice Combs" - which work pretty well at catching those little buggers.

Well, I tried to comb through everyone's hair before using the mayo and Alistair cried bloody murder because it hurts to run a metal comb along one's scalp but he let me do it. Rhys on the other hand had too many eggs. I started to run the comb along his scalp and it hurt so bad that he was shrieking in such a heart wrenching way that I stopped to love on him and calm him down. We talked about it and in explaining the necessity for using the comb on him I said that it was either this or I had to shave his head. He begged me to shave his head. He was very sad to loose his pretty hair but there was no way that I could have combed all of those nits and eggs out without him shrieking and crying all morning. So, I got and old towel and shaved all of his hair into it. His head was scabbed and covered with these gross creatures. My heart just sinks looking at his head now bald and scabby.

We did the mayo thing (you apply mayo to the scalp and wrap your head in plastic for at least an hour - we did 1 1/2 hours just to be sure) rinsed with vinegar again and Al and I went through the nit-picking battle again. I felt so bad for him but it has to be done consistently and repeatedly if I don't want to put the chemical shampoo on his head - which I don't - since it's a carcinogen and he's only two.

I'm fairly positive that we've got them all. I've spent the past 2 days laundering everything that can be laundered and vacuuming everything else. My head itches but at least two people have checked it and I appear clean. Did I mention that we still don't have a functioning shower and thus are dealing with this in the bathtub? I cannot deal with this happening again. I just can't. I WILL have a nervous break down and I WILL shave off my hair a la Britney Spears or Sinead O'Connor if I have to deal with it again. SERIOUSLY!

So, how does this relate to cycling?.... well... helmets of course! Rhys' helmet is currently in quarantine as are mine and Al's. So, we're probably going to be walking for the next week to week and a half... which reminds me... I have to go vacuum the entire car out since we had to drive to get to the store to buy mayo and lice combs yesterday (no sidewalk for part of the walk). The work will never end!

So, here's Rhys with his bald head and some cycling shots we've taken recently to add something nice to this post:

Bald Rhys from the front and the back (notice the gash from the swings and the scabs - ouch)

Rhys the night we discovered the lice and my bike at the post office a couple of weeks ago

Produce from the farmers market procured by bike and brought home in my own reusable bags.

Hubby and the kids at a volley ball game (we rode there).

The kids enjoying some peaches at the farmers market.


bevq said...

Oh hon- I am so sorry you had to go through this!

It only hit our home the one time. I had been bedridden for 3 1/2 months expecting our 3rd son, and the 2 older boys had been taken care of by my friend. She also cared for a couple more little ones who had lice it turns out. We discovered all this
10 days after Timmy was born!

The school called to ask me to come get my son and then told me all about RIDX or some nasty stuff. Never knew there was a natural alternative-- this was back in 1986 - no internet!

So we went through the RIDX thing on the boys who were 4 and 6 at the time. Timmy was spared the lice, thank goodness as he had a lot of newborn hair! Can you imagine having to use anything like that on a newborn????

It was late October and freezing in Upper MI where we lived so I put all their stuffed animals etc outside in a garbage bag, and washed laundry, drapes, bedding, walls... till I thought I would collapse!

Amazing how you survive those events and come out almost normal :)


Joeffrey said...

Where did that head lice came from? Is there any way to stop them? coz it’s kind of annoying when they are living on you, your scalp will be itchy and sometimes you can’t concentrate on your works. The most things are when I was in a meeting and in front of my co investors I scratch my head and I can’t stop it coz it’s so itchy is there any quick head lice treatment that can help me with it.