This afternoon the school calls and says that my daughter's classroom has been singled out as an epidemic of head lice.
OMG OMG OMG OMG I think to myself. I've never seen it, never had it, don't have a clue about it.
My experience of head diseases stops at dandruff.
So here we go searching, because who knows, there might be something there. Adventurerama right?
Wrong. How very freaking wrong.
Daughter gets sat down and I take out a comb, and gently pull apart her hairs and AHA!
There - in front of me are speckles of white. They shift, they move -and panicked that I am, I scream for the husband to come over. He hmmms... He hmpppffffs... He nudges a few hairs over and starts picking through her hair while I sit there freaking out.
Finally he stands back and he says, "That's not lice, that's dandruff."
I breathe the deepest sigh of relief. I am instantly calm. The man of the house has spoken - life is good.
And then he smiles and he pulls her hair apart and snags something. Me, I think he's joking around. He turns and grabs a sandwich bag, opens it up, slips his hand in, pulls his hand out and zips it up tight...
He hands the bag to me and says proudly: "Now that's a lice."
He woke me up from the floor. There are few things that really bother me - not quite phobias, but extreme dislikes. BUGS are one of them. Lice are BUGS.
He's laughing at me - I'm freaking out.
I'm thinking about all the things we'll have to cancel. How we can avoid telling anyone - will we have to give up our membership at the country club? Oh we're scourge! We're horrible people. I knew I should have vacuumed twice a day. I knew I shouldn't have worn those pants twice, I didn't think anyone would notice - honest.
Suddenly the world tunneled in on me.
He's laughing at me still...
I'm thinking - my mind is whirling and then - the most amazing thing happened. Every BIT of my skin started crawling. I had the itchies. Everything everywhere felt like it was being tickled... And I'm freaking out even more.
Hubby dearest realizes I'm about to explode in a freak out session of mass proportions because he knows that I'm almost bug-o-phobic - I'm almost in hysterics.
Me... A person who has held dying people gooping blood out and pieces of bodies... Me... the one who has assisted with airplane casualties... Me... the one who has picked up decapitated heads... I'm seriously a basket case when it comes to the thought of little critters crawling around on my skull.
I won't even let him check my head, because I don't want to know for sure I've got them. Nope. Not going to be there if I don't know for sure.
He's laughing his ass off - still. He carefully turns to the fridge and pulls out a bottle of wine, and pours me a glass - which I down in five seconds holding it out for refills. A few glasses later, I'm coherent and able to think straight.
I start military strategy. I write down with efficiency the things we will obviously need:
A kit of removal for every person. A trenchcoat and hat with sunglasses for the person buying the kits, a complete plastic tarp... a flame thrower - a new tent to live in with sleeping bags.
I hand the list to the husband because I am OBVIOUSLY not going to be the one to go to the store. He gently removes the pen from my hand and marks off everything except the kits.
He valiantly agrees to go to the store.
(Of course, I had a steak knife in my hand thinking about how I could skewer any that might jump into the air...)
I don't even have to argue.
For my protection, he takes the child with him.
Me, I'm standing in the middle of the kitchen, afraid to move in any direction, knife in hand, waiting for something small and brown to come out of the sandwich bag that I haven't looked at or touched since he handed it to me in a moment of his bad judgement.
I know that when it comes out, it will be something the size of a pit bull. It will have massive chompers and it will violently twist my head in it's claws as it drains my lifeblood from my head.
Oh yeah, baby, I'm not afraid of bugs. I just can't stand them.
Hubby and kid come home in gales of laughter. I'm still in the kitchen. I've given up on my vigilance with the knife. I'm coming to terms with the fact that I might have some guests visiting me - at least until I can rip open the boxes of shampoo.
I glop the shampoo on all of us - we wait the expected 10 minutes. We all start the combing process.
I tell them - Don't even think about telling me what you find in my hair, as I pick a few nits out of my daughter's hair. Little dandruff looking things - yeah sure... Dandruff...
I keep telling myself that nothing is going to pull an Alien on my hands and start chomping with ravenous teeth.
So that part is done.
He wouldn't get me the flame throwers so I guess I can't torch the house. I've sprayed every surface that is imaginable. I've vacuumed, I've wiped, I've combed, I've washed...
I have so much more to do. He won't let me use bleach either. Sigh... He just doesn't understand...
So here I sit, after a bottle and a half of wine (I'm a very very light drinker - so I'm trashed ahoy!)... I've finally gotten the nerve to see the little prisoner he caught and put in the bag. I put it up against the light...
I look and it waves at me with all of it's legs - and this immense guilt comes over me as I realize I just wiped out his whole world... I've just demolished his forrests of splendor and his families of love...
Ah well. Too bad...
Die sucker! I'm saving you so I can give you to the school nurse.
You know... There are a couple of people I wouldn't mind dumping this on... Just casually open the bag near their heads and shake...
Ahhh... that's right. I'm a nice person...