Warning: reading this post will make you itchy all over. Consider yourself warned!
For the past many years I have kept my head buried pretty deep in the sand when it comes to the whole tick thing. When the kids were younger I’d check them, sometimes, in the bath, but that was the extent of my tick related efforts. This year, however, they are consuming my thoughts.
Maybe it’s because we started letting Daisy go outside a few weeks ago and within days we discovered a big, fat tick on her back. Alan and I spent a long time that night attempting to remove it, resulting in fur and cat scratches everywhere. Alan eventually managed to sneak in on her when she was sleeping and get it off. Thankfully! I was texting with my friend off and on during and she said to leave it alone, it will fall off, happens all the time, etc. I was so grossed out!! She sleeps in Lex’s bed and cuddles with the kids and blech!
The next day we got her a flea collar. She is now the dorkiest cat on the block, wearing not one, but TWO collars around her neck. Lucky kitty. A few days later we found another tick on her. Ugh!
Or maybe it is because the ticks are everywhere this year. Two days after the Daisy/tick incident I discovered a tick crawling up the back of one of my kiddos at school. He was laying on my lap being fussy so I started rubbing his back. A moment later I said, “what’s this bump on your back?” I pulled up his shirt and found a tick crawling up his back. YUCK!! I did not react calmly, instead I practically dragged this poor kid around by his shirt trying to get to a good place to dispose of the tick. At the Montessori school we respect all life and gently escort bugs and spiders outside, but this tick when straight down the toilet, despite gasps from the little kids!
A few days after that one of the teachers discovered something that looked like it might be a head lice nit in the hair of a child. The teacher showed me the nit, told me all about checking the child’s hair, and so that became the primary topic of conversation between the teachers for the next few days. So far (knock on lots and lots of wood!) we haven’t seen anything else or heard any reports from families.
However, between all these buggy incidents I am now totally paranoid! Every time I have an itch I feel the need to check for ticks, or lice – nothing nice!
Eve and I participated in a Girl Scout event this morning that had us traipsing through the forest. I insisted she and I both wear long sleeves, long pants, socks tucked in, and hair back with hats on. One of her friends said, “Eve, it’s summer time, you don’t need to wear long sleeves,” and Eve fired back “I found two ticks on me and do you know why they didn’t bite me? Long sleeves!!”
Eve pulling garlic mustard plants with a fellow Girl Scout.
Are you thoroughly itchy now?! I am!! I hate bug spray almost as much as I hate sunscreen (well, maybe more) but this might be the year I try it again. Or maybe I could get us all tick anklets?
Happy summer! ;)