Tuesday, March 25, 2008

The two most frightening words in my world: HEAD LICE

Did your skin just crawl? Mine sure did.

Nearly one year ago, Miss B came home from school with an uninvited guest. I happened to take her to work with me as she was feeling a bit puny. We walked through the hallways near my office to get some water when I saw something in her hair. I thought it was just a piece of fuzz.

An average day went from average to one of the worst in about 3 seconds. As I tried to move the fuzz, it moved itself. I nearly screamed. My daughter's head was crawling with bugs. How had she not gone crazy? I ask this question because just a few days later, I found a louse on my head. On my head. On. MY. Head. My first reaction to this was to call my mommy and cry.

And I still haven't gotten over it. Every itch of my head triggers flashbacks to the days of RID and lice combs. If it's possible for someone to get Post Traumatic Stress Disorder from head lice, then I know that I have that. I can be very strong in the face of danger and tragedy, but I cannot in any way not lose my mind when there are tiny little bugs crawling on my head! And my husband is afflicted with male pattern blindness. Just as he cannot see dosage information on medicine labels, notes asking him to do something before I get home, or numerous other things in plain sight, Woody could not seem to see any of the nits or eggs in my hair. This meant that I spent at least an hour every night combing my hair with one of those awful little red combs with the wire teeth.

Finally one night I didn't get anything in the comb. Then it was two nights. After about 2 weeks, I decided they were really gone.

But now they are back. Some how I made it through my entire education without getting lice. And my daughter not only gets it and gives it to me, she gets it again. I'm already starting to crack. I haven't found any on me or Sister Goldenhair (though I cannot be certain since I was checking her hair with a flashlight as she slept). I just hope that all will be well with everyone else.

And so I will take my heebie jeebies and go to bed. Any bets on what I'll dream about tonight?

Tuesday, March 11, 2008

A letter to my teenage self

There's a song currently in play on country stations (I listen to a lot of different types of music, so please no harassing comments *g*). It's by Brad Paisley and it's called "Letter to Me." It's all about him wanting to writer a letter to himself at age 17. It's full of advice and comforting words.

This has got me to thinking. What would I say to myself as a teenager? What would I change? What did I worry about back then, that I shouldn't have? And so I present a letter to a teen aged indywriter...

Dear indy,

I know high school is a strange time in a girl's life. You are with your friends all day, but you're also with people who drive you crazy. You want to make your own decisions, but you still have to abide by your parents' rules. You care a lot about what's going on in your little world, but you know there is a bigger world waiting for you.

First of all, don't let that cocky guy in history class get to you. He won't be successful at that prestigious school he got into. They will finally do something about his propensity for cheating. And really, you shouldn't worry about him anyway.

Enjoy your time in music classes. You haven't found time since then to own or practice a saxophone. You will miss it.

You really might want to reconsider your intended major. While you enjoy the topic, you will never get a job in your field.

Tell your mom thanks. She deserves it for putting up with you and your moods (yes, you do have them). You guys will be friends. And when you and your dad butt heads (again), know that one day you will get along and even talk on the phone. He will mellow when you move out of the house, and he will love your kids.

That's right, you will have two beautiful children. I'm not gonna give all the surprises away, but you should know that motherhood is more than you ever dreamed possible. It's not all glamorous and guaranteed love, but it will change you in every possible way. And those changes are for the better (except for what happens to your stomach, but the trade off is worth it).

But you should know that you won't have those kids with who you think you will. You will dump your current guy when you're in college. You will be thankful for the paths you chose not to take and will wish you did it long ago. You will meet someone. He won't be a doctor or a lawyer, but he will be a good man and a good dad. Even better is that you love his parents. His mom will become a very good friend to you.

Your brother will always be a dork, but you will get along well (and not just 'cause he's your brother).

You will keep in touch with your best friend. You will still hang out, and you will be happy to see that the guy she marries loves her very much.

You know that you grumble a bit about spending every spring break in WV with your grandparents and family, but you secretly love every minute of it. But don't grumble. Don't joke about not going to the beach. Let your grandparents know how much you adore them.

Sit with Grandpa and listen to his music with him. You will learn to love it someday, but he would be trilled to share it with you. And play gin rummy with him until he's tired of it. I know you get bored with it after several hands, but you can't imagine how much you will wish you could still play cards with him. You should know that he will be gone too soon. You will hurt for a long time and you will miss him forever.

And your great aunts? They will be gone sooner than you think too. Enjoy "the old ladies" whenever you get the chance. They always enjoy you and your little ones.

Just know that the things you worry about now, will not be the same things you worry about in the future. You will be blessed in all the ways that really matter.

So take a deep breath and relax. Enjoy your life (and dump that guy you think is so great).