Friday, March 13, 2009

The Splinter

Yesterday, I removed a splinter from a child's hand for the first time. It was from my daughter's hand. She got a huge, wood splinter from the climbing apparatus on a playground. The whole time we were walking home- me, crying Helen, my son Elliot, their bikes -- I was wondering two things. First, was it really too crazy for me to make my husband come home from work to get the splinter out since he was potentially much better at that kind of thing? Yes, it was, too crazy. Second, could I give Helen a little bit of bourbon before I dug the thing out? As I was considering this plan of action, the scene from John Adams during which the Adams' adult daughter Abigail has a breast removed without anesthesia flashed through my mind, and I knew I was over-reacting. We got home, I stayed calm and assembled my tools, Helen flung out her hand and cried, "Just do it!" and "Be gentle!" I didn't give her any bourbon, but I did get the splinter out and I hope I was gentle enough. She was a champ, that Helen, and she got to have two cookies when it was all over.

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