Parenting Through the West Nile Outbreak
In my opinion, there are two kinds of people in this world: The kind of people who get bit by mosquitoes and the kind that don’t.
I, and one of my kids, are the latter kind of people. Our family of four can spend fifteen minutes in the backyard around dusk, and two of us will come inside with 5 – 10 bites each, and the other two won’t have been touched. It’s so completely frustrating to me that I can’t hang out with my kids in our own backyard because inevitably I’ll come inside with itchy welts all over my exposed skin. And now that the Metroplex is experiencing the largest outbreak of West Nile that this country has ever had? Now I REALLY don’t want to be outside, and especially not with my one kiddo who will get eaten up along with me.
And yes, we’ve tried all kinds of mosquito repellents. We’ve done special soaps, sprays and wipes. Generally what works best for us are those little fans that you can clip to your clothes – but even those aren’t 100% effective for us. Plus, how easy is it to get an eighteen month old to keep a fan clipped to his clothes? Yeah, exactly.
The weather here in DFW is just now calming down a little from the insanity of Texas’ Summer. So I watch from my window as my husband and my oldest son romp around the backyard with each other, safe in the knowledge that they’ll be outside for 30 minutes and never be touched by those little blood-suckers. I’ll frown and try to comfort him as I watch my baby beat on the back door and cry because he wants to go outside and play with big brother. Subjecting him and myself to all those potentially serious bites is not something I’m willing to take a chance on though.
And so, we’ll wait inside for the cooler weather. It’s bound to show up here in Dallas by mid November, right?
Click HERE for tips from the Center for Disease and Control on safety and prevention of the West Nile virus.