Life, Parenting
Comments 17

Squirming

Before we begin, can I just say this: OHMYGOD-EWWWWWW-HOLYSHITFUCK-BLEURGHH.

Right. It started when we got a note home from Amelie’s school saying that there was a case of threadworms (pinworms if you’re American) in her class. I immediately consulted Google to see what we were dealing with. HUGE mistake.

Oh god, they’re just… they’re just VILE. Disgusting doesn’t cover it. You know what happens if you get them? They go into your intestine, hatch, and then at night the female crawls OUT OF YOUR ANUS and lays thousands of eggs. That’s right, she uses your anus as a fucking NEST. She also leaves an itchy mucous so the person (most likely a child, because they don’t wash their hands properly, rancid beasts) will scratch themselves and get eggs caught in their fingernails, then they’ll touch their mouth and swallow the eggs and the whole process starts again.

Can we all just take a moment to stop and gag collectively?

So, with the vision of this ungodly horror seared into my mind and a vague itch creeping into my nethers, my eyes narrowed and I turned to Amelie, who was probably in the midst of licking her 5 month old brother, and asked if her bum was itchy.

“Yes.”

In fairness, if you asked this child if she was enjoying her masters degree she would probably answer in the affirmative.

“No, seriously, is your bum itchy? Did you sleep ok last night? CAN I LOOK AT YOUR BUM?”

“Yes.”

I had a look, I couldn’t see anything, I continued about my day. But the paranoia never left me.

What followed was a weekend of examining every poo, every twitch, every scratch. On Saturday morning she woke up looking wrecked – pale, with bags under her eyes – and I asked her if she’d slept ok. She said the duvet had come off her feet and she’d been cold. Hmmmm. I decided to wash her bedding, pyjamas and towels and any item of clothing that may have been in close proximity to her arse.

I continued bum-watch for the rest of the weekend and noted that she was very cranky (which is a symptom of worms), but she was clearly developing a cold so I couldn’t tell what was causing what. I didn’t want to give her medication just for the sake of it, you know, because I can be a bit of a hippy about these things.

I didn’t sleep very well that night.

Oh wait, I don’t sleep well any night. Anyway.

By Monday I had reached breaking point. I was washing her hands about 500 times an hour. I was washing mine even more. I used sanitising lotion in between. While she was at school I examined her clothes and bedlinen for anything that could be construed as eggs and I completely freaked out when I saw tiny flecks of something on her bed (in hindsight these were probably bits of snot).

I went to pick her up. I stood in the schoolyard and watched the children emerging from the classroom, eyeing them suspiciously and choking back the urge to puke on them as they passed. I wanted to know who the instigator was. Which one of these pale, filthy children had (POSSIBLY) infected my home with goddamn parasites?

I couldn’t take much more, my hands were raw and my laundry pile was insane. I asked some mums on Facebook. The advice was unanimous: get the drugs.

I went to the chemist and asked for Vermox. The pharmacist said you’re meant to treat the whole family. I told her that I’m breastfeeding and she advised taking the tablet and to pump and dump for 12 hours. Erm, not really an option, I said, I have no idea if he’ll take a bottle. She said to leave the drugs, wait and see, keep washing everything, that there was no point just treating Amelie. This was not the answer I wanted to hear. I bought them and went home.

At the very least I was going to treat her. And Brendan. And I decided to do some research to see if there was a way for me to take it without feeling negligent.

I gave Amelie hers crushed up in some chocolate ice-cream. Before dinner. She was bleedin’ delighted and wolfed it down in half a minute. Then Brendan got home and I gave him a dose. I promised him ice-cream for dessert. He stopped whinging about it being unfair. Then I set upon Google to tell me how bad it would be if I took one too, and I found this, and it was enough for me, so I took the tablet.

Now I’m not advocating that you ignore your pharmacist’s advice, but I did my research, made a judgment call, and decided that I couldn’t handle the anxiety of waiting to see if worms were going to crawl out of my bum.

I took it and immediately felt a huge sense of relief. But then I realised that we were not out of the woods yet, the house could still be laced with them, and the eggs can live for weeks outside of the body. So I kept washing my hands. And when the kids were asleep, I sprayed every surface in my house with disinfectant – to the point where I felt dizzy (but victorious) with the fumes. And this morning I stripped the beds again, washed the towels, and then went and bought Amelie her own laundry basket. Because that way my knickers don’t have to touch her knickers as they wait to be cleaned. And I have a feeling I’m going to keep obsessively washing everything for at least another few weeks (or until my washing machine breaks down) because I’m neurotic. And because BLEURGHH.

_____________

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17 Comments

  1. Ok, full disclosure……I googled pin worms. Why would you not warn us? Now I a going to have nightmares about my kids getting this. This doesn’t sound like a fun time but thank you for sharing. Great post.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Apologies. And consider yourself informed and forewarned. I hope you never have to experience them yourself. But in case you do: get the drugs.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I would have bleached the entire house and then scalded anything that didn’t move and then bleached everything again (and I don’t use bleach ever because i too am a bit hippy dippy). Sweet jesus that’s is just manky.

    Liked by 2 people

  3. mollyandaoifesmummy says

    Absolutely love this! Sorry, I don’t love the worms issue, but I’m currently waiting in hospital and this made me laugh out loud (meaning the whole waiting room looked at me like I’m crazy).
    In all seriousness though, I can imagine your horror. I’d be the same.
    Now to resist the urge to google threadworms!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. I remember getting threadworm when I was a child (from someone at school I presume!!) I was prob about 5/6. I remember it making my bottom itch at night and my mum finding some of them. As far as I remember the work s themselves were barely visable so I doubt you’d be able to see the eggs. Apart from the itch I was fine. My mum would boil wash my clothes and any towels I used. Obvs hand washing was a must but thankfully no one else in our family caught them. I hope my comment makes you feel better about the whole thing. I had the tablet, I remember that and then they were gone never to return again! I guess it’s one of those horrible childhood type things to look out for, similar to nits (something I’ve never had but dread in my own two!!) Try not to freak out, with good hand washing you’ll more than likely escape X

    Liked by 2 people

  5. Jasus! Now what if I told you that you got off really lightly?! As a child, I had to take medicine for worms that were doing the rounds. My mum called it ‘worm mixture’ and it was a thick pink vulgar milkshake sent from the pits of Hell. The moment it hit the back of our throats we’d vom it up all over the floor and have to crack open another sachet. Thanks be to God that there are now pills and you don’t have to suffer this hideous potion. I still remember it now. Infact, a little puke just crept up my oesophagus! It’s all come screaming back to me!
    Lush post. 😄

    Liked by 1 person

    • Haha, oh god. Yeah, we did get off lightly. Or we have so far. I still feel like sterilising my child every time she arrives home from school.

      Like

  6. Its gone 230am and I was feeling miserable because I am still awake and I came across your blog and this post has cheered me up no end🙂 I did chuckle and will be reading more. Thank you🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  7. Haha love it! Called Pinworms in Canada & I freaked all of us out when I heard about them once at the Pharmacy! We do a lot of routine hand washing n teeth brushing ALOT around here! Thanks for sharing so Honestly. It’s Refreshing as hell!

    Liked by 1 person

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