Tuesday, June 8, 2010

How to Start the Summer off like an Egyptian

Part of the reason the Grass Widow has been on a little “blog hiatus” are all the fun activities I’ve been enjoying, such as our annual family trip to Schlitterbahn last Friday and the boys’ end of school water gun extravaganza. But the rest of the reason? We were visited by several of the Biblical Plagues, and it has taken me a while to recover from them.

Plagues? Oh yes, certainly: these qualified as plagues. What were they, you ask? Well…

First, my mother visited; it was one of her worst visits in years. My panic attacks continued for almost a week after she left, as this time she left no stone unturned in her quest to communicate to me the central message of our 40 year relationship: NOT GOOD ENOUGH, TARI. Oh my, being told 16 ways to Sunday you just don’t cut it by one of the people you should be able to trust the most is certainly plague-like. At the very least, like a very bad rash.

Next, Two had an attack of tonsillitis. This is his favorite illness: his tonsils take turns swelling full of foul bacteria, bacteria that makes him sick enough to vomit (and vomit and vomit and vomit). His fever soars, his head aches, and he is even too tired to play. He has had three cases of this since Christmas, and it is always plague-like and miserable. Poor Two: most of the time being small is a blessing, but when it comes to one’s immune system, more like a curse.

Finally, we come to the best plague of all: lice. Yes: vermin. Vermin that infested my two children like nothing I ever imagined. In fact, it was so bad I found out about it by looking down at Two’s pretty little golden head and seeing two large, scary lice look back at me and wave. I kid you not. That is how those two lice will always appear in my memory: three inches long at least, with big eyes and waving hands – cartoon lice having a picnic on my seven year old’s head. And so we washed, we scrubbed, we laundered everything in the house that could possibly fit in the washer. And I combed. And combed. And combed. Dead lice by the dozens came out of Two’s hair. It was sick – every wipe of the itty bitty lice comb brought out a dark, smushy smear of bodies. Finally after two lice treatments and two hundred loads of laundry, we were lice-free. But oh, my head will itch for months at just the thought of those creepy, crawly little buggers! A plague, indeed – one almost worthy of the Book of Exodus.

And so, an inauspicious start to the summer. But as I said, mixed in with the bad there has been much good, and I promise to write about it, too. Soon. But right now – excuse me – I need to go scratch my head again.

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