There are 2 things that I am really great at: 1) eyebrow tweezing; and, 2) splinters. It’s kind of funny that both of these activities involve tweezers. Perhaps in some former life I was an assistant to a botanist or a surgeon.

“Tweezer.” And there I’d be. (On second thought, maybe I was the botanist or surgeon, and that’s where my precision and skills come from. Yes, I like that better.)

Anyway, today I found a great need for my splinter removal skills. It seems that while Audrey and her family were in DC this weekend, a wooden deck that the kids had been romping on had some loose specks, and some of these found their way into the little feet of her 4 boys. I noticed a few on Benjamin (2) and Henry (10 months) while I was watching them this morning. Audrey was at her pediatrician with Alex (3) to check out a possible rash.

When Audrey arrived at my home, I told her about the splinters. She said, “Oh, wow. Alex doesn’t have a rash, but our doctor removed 4 splinters from the bottom of his feet.” She immediately put in a call to her pediatrician and scheduled a noon appointment for Ben and Henry’s splinter removals.

I reminded Audrey that I am, with all humility, the greatest and most gentle splinter remover-er on this planet. I also reminded her of all the splinter stories from the childhoods of her and her siblings. She didn’t budge. She kept the appointments.

Audrey called later to let me know that her pediatrician’s intern went in for the splinter digging, and that both Ben and Henry screamed through the process. (Alex described this person as a friend of Dr. Lam’s named Brown. In actuality, the intern is a medical student from Brown University. Alex gave me quite a chuckle at this, and was quick to tell me that Dr. Lam was the one who removed his splinters.)

Long story short. William came to my home for lunch after pre-school and I took a peek at the bottom of his feet. Sure enough, splinters. I didn’t call Audrey; instead, I filled a basin with warm water and a packet of oatmeal soak, and explained to William that I am the finest splinter-remover-er ever. He was not convinced at first, but I told him of my splinter-removal legacy with his mommy and auntie and uncles. Truth be told, I was chomping at the bit to get at those evil splinters.

I wanted to say the word, “Tweezer.” OK. I did say it. The sight of this little number frightened William even more, but my calm expertise soothed his worries. I am that good.

Soak (on my Trex deck!). Inspection. Second-by-second explanation. Soon, I had removed 7 splinters from William’s feet and toes, and 3 from his fingers. Without a whimper. Without a tear. Then more soaking, where Alex had to get in on the act, too. After all, he also had splinters removed today!

I texted Audrey my splinter surgery story, and she was fine with it. I mean, she knows just how great I really am at this. Been there, done that with me.

Ah… I guess if I must be great at something, it may as well be something awesome where I can imagine a friend named Brown handing me my TWEEZER on command!

Splintered was last modified: February 9th, 2010 by Sharon Couto
SHOWHIDE Comments (6)
  1. Luke is constantly getting splinters (he’s like a magnet for them), and I so hate plucking my eyebrows. I need you around my house!

  2. Oh Sharon, Sounds like instead of a splendid day, it WAS a splintery day. Good for you for getting those little things out. They can be so annoying. You are such the grandma! I have the best pair of tweezers called tweezerman. Speaking of tweezers, I need to pluck my chin hairs…

  3. I’m so bad at getting splinters out! I need your skills because my son always finds a way to get them. My husband is pretty good but he doesn’t soak them first and I think that just might help him!

  4. Very impressive! That’s a skill that definitely comes in handy. I used to get so many splinters and hated having to get them taken out. Of course, my parents’ deck is Trex now too (and only about 18 years too late!).

Splintered was last modified: February 9th, 2010 by Sharon Couto