April 3, 2013

A Letter of Resignation

To My Family & Friends,

After around thirty seconds consideration and with a heavy heart, I have decided to resign from my position as Mother.

I have enjoyed working with my children for the past nearly fourteen years. Unfortunately, however, this latest outbreak of lice has made my position as head of the family (no pun intended) to be untenable.

There are several reasons why I have come to my decision.

  1. There was no mention made of the possibility of lice when I took on the position of Mother. I feel that I was tricked into a role that I did not agree to.
  2. Removing lice from my children's hair is virtually a full time job in itself. There is simply no time in the day to attend to other parenting duties, such as feeding my kids, bathing them, doing the laundry, and drinking wine.
  3. Lice are revolting.
  4. Lice removal lotions smell terrible.
  5. My children are clean. Lice, apparently, like clean hair. This creates a paradox which leads to severe cognitive dissonance which causes me extreme stress.
  6. I can't claim worker's compensation for my extreme stress because Motherhood doesn't come with insurance.
  7. My children complain that their heads are itchy then they complain when I put the lice potion on them then they complain even more when I use the fine toothed comb. I can't win. What is the point of a job where I cannot win?
  8. There is no pay. There has never been any pay, but this is completely unacceptable now that I have to remove lice.
So goodbye children, and goodbye Motherhood. It's been fun. Some of the time. The rest of the time has been lice.

I wish me the best of luck with all my future endeavours.

Kerri

86 comments:

  1. Charmaine ClancyApril 3, 2013 at 8:08 PM

    I can't help but think if there was a national lice-removing day where EVERY parent delices their kids on the SAME day (and a follow up day the regulation 4 days later), then they would all be gone forever. Forever. Wouldn't they?

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  2. I only allow my son to wash his hair on Fridays. That would explain why his head smells. But we've never had lice

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  3. Can't even. Every goddamn scratch I swoop on my boys DO YOU HAVE THEM AGAAAIIIINN ... they don't. But I think I have what's generally known as, "Post-Lice PTSD."

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  4. I can not stop scratching my head

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  5. My lord, Karen ..... but thank you for this community service announcement! I hope i never, ever have to use the methods you've spoken of here. (But I fear I will.)

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  6. Recurring lice infestations can lead to extended periods of feeling hopeless. The only solution is to buy the cheapest, nastiest, largest bottle of conditioner known to mankind, slather your kids head in it, leave it for 10 minutes, then use the tiny comb of doom. And do that every other day for 10 days.


    I've only just recovered from the lice infestation of 2011 but have blessedly avoided it ever since. I put this down to my approach to both home duties and attentiveness to my children's general cleanliness registering in the category of benign neglect.


    But seriously, cheap conditioner is your friend.

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  7. I am totally with you on the conditioner routine. It was the only thing that broke us free from lice

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  8. My boys rarely use shampoo. In fact, they rarely shower or bathe. This explains a lot but could also explain our lice-free status for almost 2 years.

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  9. Our son's primary school did that - did everyone's head at school. I was mortified as we had not had any incidents of lice to warrant such a thing. But having now had a year where lice was basically our family pet I totally get it. To my knowledge it did little to stop outbreaks.

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  10. Wow. I had no idea. My kids have never, ever, once had lice. Or I just haven't looked hard enough. I'm going to choose to believe the former.

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  11. We took our lice to Houston, on the plane - Nits on a plane "I've had it with these god damn mother f*cking nits on this mother f*cking plane" We were then the new family who arrived at their first day of school with lice (including me). I feel your pain. It took everyone getting very short hair and loads of conditioner and combing to eventually win. I agree with the hair straightener - great idea. *scratches head*

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  12. Yes!!! This needs to be done! On occasion I have briefly considered offering to check every child in the school and cast judgement upon their mothers, but my husband has always prevented me from doing so.
    Probably a good thing. I'd have to cast judgement on myself.

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  13. What_Sarah_Did_NextApril 3, 2013 at 9:24 PM

    Oh God, this brings it all back... the infamous Outbreak of 2005. It was fierce, non-discriminatory and all encompassing. Son #2 started it, coming home with the little blighters on his clean yet needing-to-be-cut hair. By the time we realised he had them, EVERYONE IN THE HOUSE had them. Including my eldest son (16 at the time). He was both horrified and revolted, "just get them OUT" being muttered continuously as I combed the lotion through. We were sworn to secrecy not to tell ANYONE he'd had them, lol.


    I didn't escape them either, unfortunately. My hair was much longer than it is now... about 5 cm past my shoulders. Let me tell you, Kerri, pulling a lice comb through thick, long hair is something akin to cruel and sadistic torture. After the first few sections, I was *this* close to getting a buzz cut.


    But we kept at it - every freaking night - and eventually we got rid of them. Persistence is key! Hang in there, hon xxx

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  14. I get it. I hear you. I've been there. The first time I tackled lice was when my little sister was staying with us and her entire head was full of them. Now that was ripped off, she's not even my kid!! Then when my boys were 6months & 2 they both had them and I thought 'this shit is just ridiculous!' But I must admit, I was kinda drawn to the smell of "Moov" though ;)

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  15. It's very much like the ebola virus. But at least the fucking ebola virus kills you.

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  16. I have a comb with a brass insert, with gaps fine enough that you have to clean it with dental floss. My kids all have fine hair, and I found the plastic ones just let the egg and hair slide through as one = waste of time. Don't stress, just doggedly go through the routine Karen described above, and they'll be gone. I remember the first time one of my boys got headlice - I treated it like the ebola virus!

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  17. Judgement is GOOD. Judgement WORKS. (I think I heard that in a movie somewhere)

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  18. Thank you in advance for not inviting me to your home. xxx

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  19. Could we just perhaps spray Norsca on them and be done with it?

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  20. You are my new guru. I bow before your wisdom, and tremble.

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  21. I am currently curled up in the fetal position sobbing. I'm pretty sure that counts as PLPTSD too....

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  22. I am THISCLOSE to shaving mine off.

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  23. Your comments made me laugh out loud. Then a lice flew out of my throat.

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  24. If it makes you feel any better, my two boys LOVE the conditioner combing. Short hair is so forgiving. Nevertheless, I hope the little bloodsucking buggers never darken your door ;-)

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  25. I've SEEN Cameron scratch. In fact, I reckon she's scratching right now. Go on! CHECK. I dare you....

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  26. Preach, sister. Sweet freedom.

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  27. NITS ON A PLANE???? It's like every parent's worst nightmare. After, you know, the plane crashing and stuff...

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  28. When my kids where young i used so many shit products i only now just realized i should have just used yes caster oil wrap hair up in plastic they drown then wash hair in morning ! It really works and well :-)

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  29. The 16yo???? Oh GOD that's awful. My daughter made me swear not to tell anyone. Which means... er... this post was never written.... oops.....

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  30. Oh that is BRILLIANT. Frontline!!!!! *rushes to pet shop*

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  31. ONLY you could have known that. ONLY YOU.

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  32. ty for you posts I am another with PLPTSD, and i am crying now with much-needed laughter

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  33. Can't believe I never thought of that! Great idea for long hair!

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  34. Son used to suffer similar head lice infestation (hardly surprising, given all his class mates were scratching their heads when I went in to help with reading) ... till I talked him into a number 2 hair cut. No more lice! (Mind you, a daughter might not be so happy to be shorn!)

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  35. I have 5 kids..... two are terribly pron to nits drives me nuts My only daughter is the worst (of course she has the longest hair and the loudest squeal and chuckes the best hissy fits... it had to be her!) I mostly use the Conditioner road totally soak her hair in it and wrap her head with Glad wrap (because she can't help but lean on everything) leave it there for as long as possible, it suffocates them and they tend to die, then we comb the suckers out with the metal comb, the conditioner makes this an easy(er) task.... repeat every other day, till gone ...... them she goes back to school and brings back a new batch woot!! *sigh* my son in daycare tends to find them too, the others rarely get them odd!

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  36. I also straighten her hair as often as possible I'm not sure it helps but .... teaches the little buggers a lesson..... or something .....!

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  37. Good overview Karen. May I also suggest you use slightly diluted white conditioner on your kids hair (as in leave it in and style it) EVERY day. This will help keep the suckers away.

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  38. On two occasions my daughter has had them and thanks to her waist length hair every "session" of treatment took THREE HOURS. I am missing days of my life to those damn lice.

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  39. Ironically, now as I look at your professional photo here on the top of this page I think you are scratching your scalp.

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  40. I feel your pain - literally! We have discovered lice for the first time this year - I thought I loved the fact my little girl was now at school and I had a day free a week but I hadn't counted on TWO bouts of lice in seven weeks! Got rid of that finally after treatment, day and night conditioner /nit inspection and removal for a week, second treatment, another day / night conditioner process, and a third treatment (very important!) And my husband did most of it - bless him! But add to that BOILS that she picked up camping (infected splinter or something - the most foul thing ever - again, lancing the boils were hubby's domain - I love Avignon a nurse husband sometimes). However, now back from GPs having found out I've contracted her staph infection and now have nasty itchy lumps across my belly. Surely I did enough bearing them - I should be immune afterwards (particularly in the vicinity of the Caesar scar - oh the irony) Btw - autocorrect is changing the words 'having a' to 'Avignon' (?) and won't let me correct it - so I'm just leaving it as is!

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  41. Yep...she's right! I've done this. It works! :)

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  42. I don't remember the last time I washed my kids' hair....no lice....seee....... :)

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  43. Kylie - you can't avoid seeing the nasty little things (and the dark eggs) so you can be pretty sure your kids haven't had them. Lucky thing - although as lice don't like unclean hair maybe this means you are not as fastidiously clean (or your kids aren't) as we would have thought??? (joking of course! - maybe its all the chlorine that's killed them!)

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  44. There are many products that the lice have developed an immunity to - I found most of them didn't work and we still had live lice even as treated as directed. If they say they kill eggs they are lying. I found one product called full marks - that worked to kill the lice. If you use it often enough, you break the cycle. It is not a pleasant product - it leaves the hair very greasy even after you wash it several times with shampoo. It did work for us however.

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  45. I have just read your post, then all the comments and despite this being about nits ugh, I have laughed my head off!! Thanks for the best giggle I've had in days :) touch wood but my daughter hasn't had nits ever, and I do the tea tree oil and water spray! She sprays her hair to put it up so this works well. She's 9, and so far so good :) they better stay away!

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  46. HI Kerri,

    Having had my first lice outbreak a month or so ago I completely understand your sentiments. It drives you mad! I even considered saving all of our heads....it is no fun!

    Lorraine

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  47. Hi Kerri, I laughed all the way through your post (sorry to laugh at your expense!) but it was so me and my poor daughter all through infants and primary school. Basically she had nits for five years (and this isn't something you want blazened in the Guiness Book of Records either). Even though she's in high school now, she still gets an intermittent outbreak but we're over the chronic phase. Sorry to be a prophet of doom and gloom but we tried all the shampoos, potions, foams - herbal and hardcore - known to humankind but they kept coming back. It was a bit comforting for a while to blame others (all those awful contaminator friends) but in the end we had to accept some responsibility - long, clean hair is apparently irresistable to nits. I contemplated shaving her scalp like they used to do with ringworm in the olden days, but she wouldn't comply. I contemplated dousing her head in raw insecticide but thought it might qualify as child abuse or kill her (didn't know about the drop of Frontline - the dogs use that and it's okay but doesn't completely eradicate the fleas). That endless cycle of treating lice, nits, washing bed linen, repeating treatment in a few days, then a week later - all so relentless and ineffective. In the end she and all her friends had headlice almost permanently through primary school. We were forced to learn to live with them, as well as tactics to avoid humiliation - not to scratch publicly or she'd be sent home from school. Once is okay but more than once and you feel a bit stigmatised. I have a theory that the headlice nowadays are uber-nits, completely desensitised to chemicals, but it's only a theory...good luck!

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  48. I caught them from a backpacker on a plane! This "no hygiene" keep away lice theory did not apply to her! We have just been through another lice cycle here on planet madness. Vodka worked (me drinking it made combing so much more pleasant!).

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  49. PMSL reading this post and especially the comments! I'm a big fan of hitting them hard with chemicals myself - haven't tried frontline yet but will give it a go next time. Every time I see the kids even move to scratch their heads I go into panic attack and reach for the bottle (2 actually, the vodka and the nit poison!).

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  50. My children are clean of lice now and have been for maybe about 2 months. I haven't used any of those lice removal creams. Once a week, usually on a sunday before school, I just comb their hair with conditioner and the fine tooth comb while they are having a shower. Just buy the cheap conditioner. It will get rid of them and cause your brushing their hair once a week any lice they do get you can get rid of them.

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  51. Oh Kerri, quite literally PMSL (must do something about those damn pelvic floor muscles) Anywho... I get it. I totally get it. They are gross! They are itchy and the little bastard newly hatched critters evade the comb thingy too!!! We had our first ever lice/nit issue a few weeks ago and yet I can still feel them crawling on me I am sure of it!

    Gotta love it from a preppie's perspective.... After treating her hair she insisted on going to school (if only that desire lasted) so I took her and as I was about to explain quietly to the teacher why she was late, my 5 yr old very excitedly announced to her classmates "I am late because I had BUGS in my hair, I even had to have TWO showers!!!" The class was enthrawelled as they all began telling their stories of having 'hair bugs' LMAO.

    Hey! You know what else is gross! Poo explosions. Like the one I just discovered while typing that last sentence... the ones that permanently stain the brand new carpet in our brand new rental and the one and only designer outfit my baby owns. Poo explosions are gross! And why do they stain so badly? They are boob milk FFS!!!" Ummm yeah, rant over... for now.

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  52. Did that to my son once. Daughters? Not so much!

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  53. Yes, a couple of people have mentioned the hair straightener. Interesting.....

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  54. Avignon works. It sounds very sophisticated. BOILS, however, is just GROSS!

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  55. Yes, am getting on to the tea tree thing. Thanks!

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  56. You just need to worry about FLEAS...

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  57. Saving? I think you mean shaving! You don't want to save your heads. You probably want to cut them off!!!

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  58. OH you poor thing! Sounds horrendous!!!! Glad it's over!

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  59. LOL. Yep. Big fan of the vodka. Cures everything.

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  60. Oh marvelous. If nits aren't bad enough we now have poo explosions on the blog! AWESOME!!! x

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  61. Don't despair, Kerri! I'm sure you'll find another job very soon...and, may I add, one that pays a lot more! ;)

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  62. Good friends of ours with gorgeous hair gave me the tip of never using shampoo on our babies from the start. I was SO glad that I did. Just washing their hair with water gives beautiful results as their hair has never been stripped of its natural oils. As a plus, they have retained the lovely baby-head smell! And - never any lice. Very hard to go from shampoo'd from the beginning back to hair 'au naturale' however.

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  63. Hi Kerry,

    Your post made me chuckle which I badly needed. Aaarrgh ... I have certainly been there. They are near to impossible to get rid off and seem to love clean hair more than dirty.

    So here's an idea ... don't wash their hair or perhaps shave it off lol.

    I am blogging world virgin but am enjoying it thuse far.

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  64. When Tamika was in primary I had FOUR years of this. Not sure what was the final cure, but the whole school got treated on the same day, plus She tinted her hair. Yup I know I copped a lot of flack for letting my daughter in year six tint her hair. But another parent recommended it and after four years of treatment every Sunday, conditioner every second day, plus don't forget you have to wash all of the bedding, I was like fuck it she can have green hair if it works. Tinted Tamika's hair and she never got lice again. Moral of the story, stick your kids hair in bleach, then go to their school and do it to every other child!

    http://iliska-dreams.blogspot.com.au/

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  65. Remember old movies set in Victorian times where families of many girls would have them all lined up by age braiding each others hair? Do that with the lice combing, see if it works.
    Or shave their heads.
    My entire family, parents, siblings, children, never had lice, but when my daughter moved into the hills area, her two had lice every autumn for three years.

    The tea tree oil treatment doesn't get rid of them, but once the lice are gone it should keep them away, as it did for E and S, if it is used every single day from then on. All year round.

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  66. Right. I could have done without the picture. And now I'm itchy. I'm thinking about payback. Just wish I had a way. Bugger.

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  67. when I was growing up I desperately wanted head lice. Its not like we were too poor to afford them (nobody is) but its just that I never got any. I really, really wanted that day off school. I think now, if I had kids, and they brought home lice, I'd turn into a homicidal maniac. So really, you're doing well just by weeping into your wine glass (the one you don't even have time to fill). I have absolutely no advice (yay!) on head lice so I will just say, good luck.

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  68. Oh I'm in stitches! I love it! (The post, not the lice - definitely not the lice!)

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  69. something that has helped me trmendously, after you get rid of the little buggers, use natural lavender shampoo and conditioner ( you can get it from lavender farms) i was advised this by someone and it works! nits hate lavender and have been completely nit free since!

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  70. oh and forgive me for any spelling mistakes, im sleep deprived because of a 2 week old baby in the house!

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  71. Kerri, I am of the opinion that the lice are becoming mutant, that they have grown a resistance to all the lotions and potions! I have given up on using the treatments and every time we have a break out I mix up my own batch of 3TBSP olive oil, 5 TBSP Eucalyptus oil and 3 TBSP Tea Tree Oil and then I sit in the sun with the affected (afflicted) one and slowly cover the hair from root to tip in the oil mixture. I then take a lice comb and go methodically through the hair, pulling out the nits. The lice come out dead as door posts and the nits slide beautifully off the hair. It takes about 20 minutes and is really not at all painful. So far I have not had an immediate repeat outbreak with this method. It's cheap and easy and I have tossed all the chemical remedies!!

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  72. PS - one of my daughters has had lice twice in the last 6 months and both times I tried different potions (including KP24). None of the potions even stunned the buggers and I had to literally chase them through my daughter's hair to find them and manually squash the life out of them!

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  73. after many years in general practice I concluded the only 'decent' treatment is for the whole family to shave their heads,rub skin with a garlic, stale beer and paraffin mix.
    Suicide is another option.

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  74. there's a salon in Newcastle that does head lice treatment - that's where I'll take my (future) kids.

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