Nitty Gritty

Now I’m typically not one to air my dirty laundry, and particularly not our nitty laundry. But  I’m willing to share my story, because it shouldn’t be a stigma to catch head lice. Sure it’s a major hassle, but it’s a likely ordeal of parenthood.

My saga includes some sweet serendipity, which started back when I bought a old fashioned fainting couch at a neighborhood yard sale that had been on my  home wish list . Then when Hubby was leaving for his backpacking trip, he ran into the same neighbor and it turned out that her daughter was more than happy to take care of our doggy for some cash. So, then I got the call that our Big Guy caught head lice (1 of about 8 kids). When our neighbor called me back to remind that I still hadn’t picked up my chase sofa, I told her that I had simply been booked and now dealing with lice. Then a miracle happened. My neighbor called back to offer her “expert nit-picker” skills, as she could sympathize with the challenge. I was overjoyed by her gracious offer.

Now you may wonder about the connection to finances or sustainability here, and my reply is that when your quality of life is down there is simply no way to focus on either. Plus, if you’ve been diligent about washing on cold and air drying to reduce your footprint, all that effort goes out the window once you have to do a month’s worth of laundry in a few days!

There is also an intriguing connection to class-ism. Admittedly when I told Hubby, one of his first reactions was that he was surprised that so many kids in expensive child care would catch lice. Another friend told me that in her son’s t-ball team head lice had gotten out of control because none of the parents were willing to tell each other. 

I’m the first to agree that the very thought of head lice makes my scalp crawl, but it shouldn’t be taboo and we should learn how to support each other. Here are a few very helpful tips from my neighbor/guardian angel:

  • Prepare yourself, head lice never comes at a convenient time!
  • Get a good metal comb, the plastic ones do NOT work.
  • Focus your energy on combing thoroughly and repeatedly.
  • Cleaning is important, but nowhere near as important as vigilant combing.
  • Comb every day until there is nothing for 3 days in a row, then comb every few days, then every week for about a month.
  • Comb at the first the sign of suspicion. Always better to stop it early on. 

If you need some basic education, this brochure says it all simply.

Have you had to put your life on hold for head lice? 
What advice to do you have for other families?

Sustainable Family Finances
The story of a family creating an abundant and sustainable life.

2 thoughts on “Nitty Gritty

  1. Ms. Miel

    Sis – Thanks for sharing. I think your comments are both helpful and insightful. It is important that we create a community, particularly in the worst of times.

    I recall my only time as an adult with lice, coming back from Fiji absolutely loaded with them. No fun at all, but there is no better time to find a friend!

    Thanks for all you do!

    Much love,



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