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Monday, March 7, 2011

The L Word

Want to know how to send your friends running? Need to clear a room? Looking for a little solitude?

I have the perfect answer.

I can sum it up in one word: lice.

Yep, just utter a simple sentence, such as "Jack and Max came home from school with lice today." I promise you the majority, if not all, of the people near you will cry "Who has lice???" and then they'll go running. Lice instantly transforms you into a pariah.

How do I know this? I speak from personal experience.

Yep, it's true. After school last Thursday, I spotted specks of white, and sure enough, those stupid, sticky specks were lice nits.

Determined to get rid of them and their creepy, crawly counterparts, Gregg and I have spent the last several days shampooing, combing, nit-picking, bagging, washing, drying, vacuuming, freezing and so on.

It is a serious hassle. The workload never ends.

Eradicating those little buggers requires one to be mindful, thorough and vigilant 24/7, and the routine is all-consuming and exhausting...just like diabetes!

And let me tell you: diabetes and lice do not make nice.

Imagine this: your hands are full of smelly, gloppy, tea tree oil-infused, lice-busting shampoo. You're applying this it-better-damn-well-work goo to your son's head, when all of a sudden he says: "I feel low." Now you need to react fast, but you need to wash your hands, make sure you don't drop any goo, and make sure your son is in a position, so that he doesn't drip goo. Then you need to get your testing supplies, while keeping your eye on your son in order to ensure that he doesn't scratch his head and get the goo on his fingers. You eventually treat the actual low, but then because he's low, he wants to take a break, before finishing the goo application. So then you need to make sure he doesn't get the goo on the couch, carpet, his hands, the candy he's eating to treat the low, etc. Then you need to beg him to finish the goo process only to hear, "I don't want to. I still feel low."

Or imagine this: You know you have the lice removed from your kids' hair, but you still have days of precautionary shampooing, combing, nit-picking, washing, drying, vacuuming, freezing and more ahead of you. Your kids are now safe to be around others and so you send them to Sunday school. While they're there, you race around the house, stripping beds of all bedding, drying all bedding on high heat, laundering dirty clothing, running the washer and dryer non-stop, vacuuming beds, vacuuming chairs, vacuuming floors, etc. You're trying to do as much as possible in your daily de-lousing routine, while your kids are out of the house. You glance at the clock and you realize you have 10 minutes to pick up your kids at the temple, which is located 20 minutes away. You race out of the house and over to the temple. You get your kids and head off to grab a quick bite to eat, before you must drop off your daughter off at her play rehearsal. You're in the drive-through at In 'N Out, with cars ahead of you and cars behind you, when you realize you forgot to bring insulin with you. Your son has his D kit, but no insulin. You feel like absolute shit for letting lice get in the way of his diabetes management.

And then you feel further like crap later on when your daughter returns home and says, "E's mom told me to stay away from her, even though I don't have lice." (I wasn't kidding about the pariah bit.)

Or imagine this: you're looking up information on lice online. Your son enters your office and whines, "I feel low." You hear him, but you're so enGROSSed in the information, you don't process what he says. You're trying to figure out if your other son's rash is lice-related. Five minutes pass, and then you hear another whine, the kind of whine that makes you jump to your feet with worry. "Mooooommmm, I said, 'I feel low.' Didn't you hear me? I feel like I'm 22. I feel like I can't walk. I need you to test me. I can't do it myself. Mooooommmm, let's go! C'mon! I'm loowww!" You test your son. He is 43, and you feel like shit for letting lice get in the way of his diabetes care a second time.

Or imagine this: It's midnight. You've finally finished all you need to do. You're caught up with kids, school, diabetes, lice, laundry, mail, dishes, etc. You're physically, mentally and emotionally beat from dealing with the double whammy of diabetes and lice...not to mention "regular" life stuff. Your eyes burn. You bones and muscles ache. You desperately need sleep. You fall into bed, and just as you're drifting off, you hear "beep beep." It's your son's Dexcom CGM alerting you to his high blood sugar. You drag your sleepy self out of bed and go test him. He needs a correction dose of insulin. You must now stay awake until 1:30 a.m. to ensure his blood sugar level drops, but doesn't drop too low.

There's been no imagining any of these scenarios for us. This has been our licey life of late!

I hope that with all of our efforts, we only have to battle the bothersome buggers once, because D is enough for this family.

By the way, if anyone needs a crash course in Lice 101, let me know. I've amassed a bunch of good tips and I'll be happy to share, but I hope none of you ever needs my help, if you know what I mean!


Alexis Nicole said...


Youve seen old pics of Synsyre? Those amazing locks? SHAVED from lice! And he wasnt even in school yet! We have no idea how HE got it!

SOunds like you had quite a week! Hope it gets better, D and lice=pure insanity!

Jules said...

omg I had to laugh. good post. recently lice/nits has been going around at my sons school. just thinking abt it makes me itchy...

Reyna said...

Oh Heidi...I feel you. Actually, and I am sure I am jinxing myself here...but, we haven't had the high-maintainence guests yet. I cannot even imagine hosting them as well as "D". That has got to be "D Mama Hell On Earth" for sure.

Hang in there friend. Chin up.

Nicole said...

WE HATE LICE!! I hope all your hard work pays off and you KILL every single one of them!!

Kylie just had a case of it this winter it was our first and it just really sucks!!

Donna ((Sweet Momma)) said...

Heidi - You are officially my hero. The fact that you have gone through ALL OF THAT... and not ran screaming is flat-out IMPRESSIVE!

Hang in there, Mama!!

Joanne said...

UGH! Lice freaks me out... I cannot imagine going through that and dealing with D. YUCK, YUCK, YUCK!

Pam said...

Lice has been in my kid's school and the school where I work A LOT this year. But by far the worst was when it INFESTED Grace's grade right when she was diagnosed. There were three second grade classes, and it was RAMPANT in all three. It got to where, when the kids got to school, all their stuff was put in individual trash bags so no one's things touched anyone else's. I spent hours praying that Grace wouldn't get it, because I knew I couldn't handle a new diagnosis AND lice at the same time. Proof that God only gives you what you can handle... none of my kids got it.

Sarah said...

may I just say, EWWW, I taught in an area that was very hot and muggy - seems to be a lice heaven and one month I think all the kids in my class had it. Oh, it was nasty I could just sit back and watch them jump across the room while I was on the phone telling the nurse she needed to come and do a recheck PRONTO.
I hope it's all gone in your home soon and doesn't make any unwelcome reappearance, EVER!
Take care

Wendy said... sounds like a freaking nightmare!!!!! NIGHT. MARE !!!! !!!!

I think I need a drink. Margarita?

Shamae said...

Oh no!! It does sound like a nightmare!! I hate lice! We haven't had to deal with this yet but I've heard it sux!

Misty said...

Oh you poor girl! Stupid lice. Stupid diabetes.