When I made my final adoption journey to Russia to bring Lola home in December 2007, little did I know I’d be introduced to the wonderful world of head lice.
Lola had them while living in Russia and unwittingly shared them with me. It was a situation which took the better part of three weeks to resolve. Her fondest wish was to NEVER have bugs again! She did share with me that she had had them since summer camp in June 2007, and since they were discovered in January 2008 that’s SIX MONTHS of itching and reproducing. I can’t even begin to imagine how many generations of the little pests were living in her hair.
This last Monday after school she called me and said “Hi, Mom - - I have good news and bad news - - which do you want to hear first?” I decided I wanted to hear the bad news this time. She told me she was in her first period class and her head itched. When she scratched she found a 'bug' in her hair. Being so mortified she could hardly function, she held that bug in her hand for the entire class period before finally squashing it and throwing it in the trash once she was sure everyone had left the classroom. All day worried about how she got them and from whom, and was fearful that they would jump off her onto other people.
That evening I inspected her hair (yes, we still have the nit-picking comb and some shampoo from last year’s ordeal, so we were well-equipped at a moment’s notice) and thankfully only found one other live critter and removed several eggs that were just about to hatch. We had caught the silly things just in time.
We did the shampoo treatment and combed her hair with the fine-toothed comb for about an hour. She was thankfully quite patient. I knew I had to keep her out of school until there was no trace of them. Since we had such a long-term resolution to the problem last time, I wasn’t sure how long this episode would take.
I checked my own hair and found a couple eggs - - I did the shampoo treatment on myself as well (and darn it, I have checked everywhere for less toxic shampoo - - - which is a much safer alternative - - - but I just cannot find it anywhere!) and combed and combed, but didn’t see anything else.
The next morning I called the school to inform them of the situation and was told to keep Lola home until all traces of the little rascals were gone.
That evening we had a mutual hair-combing session, as well as the next morning. I was safely bug-free, but she still had a few eggs which we quickly exterminated with the comb. Another day at home. She was truly bored and I think secretly wished she was at school.
It took two days of some serious combing, but she was deemed bug-free on Wednesday night!! She was ecstatic knowing that this time it only took two days to resolve the problem!