Miraculously my daughter’s hair is free and clear of head lice in the morning and I am confident that she will get past the nurse’s wooden craft stick poking through her hair and get final clearance to go back to school. We have got several notices from her teacher and the nurse about head lice running rampant in her kindergarten classroom so I am pretty sure she got lice from school and that our house is not infested, but the thought of the entire family getting lice is motivation enough for me to clean the house the best I can. That means a lot of laundry and a lot of vacuuming. As far as the wash, there’s the bedding, her stuffed animals, the clothes she’s been wearing, the bathroom carpets where we washed and combed out her hair, and the towels we used. Then there are the hats she’s been wearing recently and her jacket and her robe and any pajamas hanging up in her closet. Considering her clothes thrown in with everyone else’s in the hamper means I have to do all the wash actually to make sure no creepy crawlies ended up making camp in someone else’s shirt collar or pant cuff. That ends up being a lot of wash. To make sure I kill any bugs I have to use hot water and leave the stuff in the dryer on high heat for at least twenty minutes. Then I start the vacuuming which includes her bedroom, the playroom where she rolls around most often and then pretty much the rest of the house because I’ve got a lot of momentum at this point. And no matter how much I clean I do feel like I have failed my daughter in some way because I can’t keep things cleaner and this may have contributed to the head lice problem. I have to stop myself from the thought of taking everything out of her room and hosing it down with disinfectant. Household disinfectant would be useless for head lice anyway, although there is a special bug spray for areas she has been in contact with that came along with the gel and the shampoo. The warning on the spray can says to be certain of an infestation before using it because, like the shampoo and the gel, it’s pretty toxic stuff. I refuse to spray her mattress or anywhere else unless I can actually see bugs crawling around, but so far the only place I’ve seen bugs is in my daughter’s hair so I’ve resisted using the spray up until now.
At some point after the shampoo, the gel, the combing, the cleaning, I have to put up my hands and just accept the fact that I’ve done all I can do and I have to let go… except for the laundry, that’s going to take a while longer, and then all those other chores I have to catch up on now… ain’t this the life?