Thursday, September 15, 2011

The Check

As you all know Leilani has started kindergarten this year. Although we are only 7 days into the school year I have already experienced her horrible reaction to the school lunch food. Even though I packed her a lunch she opted for the school lunch and later on had a horrible tummy ache and puked in the middle of the pharmacy while I was buying Gatorade for her. Then today as I was dropping her off I realized another fear, LICE!

We all remember the lice checks that we had to go through in grade school. The lining up at the door, walking down to the nurses office all the while talking about whomever you suspected had lice with your friends. The conversation usually ended in vowing to no longer be that persons friend, if they had lice, because they're "nasty". Once you got to the nurses office you'd file in, one at a time, get your head checked and once you were cleared you'd join your classmates in the celebratory line. Then while you were in that line you would watch the door to see who didn't come back and then you'd know those are the
ones.
Its all very nerve wrecking. The lice check had the potential to ruin your reputation, the power to end friendships and the power to isolate you from your peers until you got treated. Now I know I sound dramatic but this is grade school were talking about everything was dramatic!

All of these memories came flooding back to me because I saw a little girl this morning with hair, that's it just hair lol, and she reminded me of lice. Now I'm not saying that she looked like she had lice I didn't even get a look at her and besides people can't really look like they have lice, right? Lol
After looking at this little girl and her pig tails I looked down at Leilani and her long tresses and thought: oh shit!
Personally I've been both, the child in the celebrating line of those that successfully passed the test and one of those that sat in the nurses office and waited for their mother to come pick them up because they "failed".

My hair at that time was long, I mean really long, past my butt and thick. I remember the daily checks and the numerous kits my mother had to buy in hopes to get the pesky invaders out of my head, so I could be sent back to school once and for all.
After numerous kits, home remedies, head checks and loads of laundry being washed in boiling hot water. The day came when the problem would be laid to rest once and for all, the day I had hoped for, the day to be LICE free and get back to whatever friends I had left.
My mother, being an immigrant from the Dominican Republic had a different idea on how my relief was going to come. She had tried all the American methods and now it was time to get back to her grass root solution. Her plan included scissors and gasoline.
I don't remember which came first, the memory is kind of like the chicken or the egg, but who gives a dam. Lol. What I remember was returning to school with short hair and being told "No te muevas" and "Quedate quieto" while the gasoline was poured over my head and the smell seeping through the numerous clothes she gave me to hold over my face.

As you can tell the whole debacle has left a lasting memory. My plan for Leilani is to do as much research on preventative methods to reduce her risk of getting lice and doesn't include gasoline.

Thank you for reading!
I am not recommending the use of gasoline to get rid of ice in any way. The passage is purely an account of my childhood experiences with lice. If you child gets lice seek medical advice or advice from your friend and family.

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