There is a lice outbreak this year at the schools. My oldest daughter and her gorgeous, practitioner long hair has brought it home three times now (maybe four – I’m losing count). The youngest daughter has brought lice home from preschool twice. For some unknown reason my middle daughter seems to be immune, or her hair is just so dirty there is no where for the lice to take purchase. (This is the reason we call her the Hobo Princess – she looks like Cinderella after the evil stepsisters have attacked.)
In addition to being known as the mom with terminal cancer I am now also known as the mom who keeps having to deal with lice.
I would gladly give up both of these titles.
But here is the thing. Parenting doesn’t stop once you get a cancer diagnosis – if anything every moment seems more intense. I will admit that I have screamed at my kids to stop fighting because I don’t have time for their fights. We don’t have time! You need to get along, I yell, because someday I won’t be here and you will need each other (and please, for the love of all that is holy, could they spare me the constant bickering until that time). Sure, I feel okay-ish these days but I don’t feel great. Right now I think I can actually feel my left kidney throbbing and it isn’t pleasant.
I remember sitting at my computer one night once chemo began. Bald. Broken. Sick. Trying to write. When my oldest daughter came in to tell me something and puked all over my feet. You know why? Because I am still the mom and moms get puked on. Moms pick out lice. None of that stops when you get cancer so I try to make jokes about how all this nit picking is just me spending quality time with my children. (You know, enjoying every moment, right? *insert eye roll here*)
As you all know I have a really amazing (& hot) husband who often has to take on the role of mother, father, and caregiver when I am not feeling well. However, that still doesn’t stop any child from coming into the bedroom and waking me up to ask for something like a snack even though their father is SITTING IN THE KITCHEN!
So yeah. I’m frustrated with the lice because I keep getting rid of it and then some other kid(s) keep infecting my daughters (we aren’t actually dealing with lice right now but I’ve spent the morning talking to moms who are). I’ve taken this up with the school. Poor Moira has a broken arm (another thing you don’t get a pass from just because you have cancer) and has had to deal with lice and I cut off a lot of her hair. Luckily I’m a total pro now and have been keeping on top of it and can get rid of it quickly. If it strikes this house one more time though I am also going to be known as the crazy mom who comes into the school and starts checking all the kids heads.
So I hear you, universe. I HEAR YOU. I promise not to take myself too seriously if you could please give us a break from the lice (and any more broken bones and vomiting) for the next couple months.