Today I was up in the attic looking for a basket when I heard the most awful scream. I did not recognize the voice and since I was in the attic, the sound was quite muffled. We live near a park so I thought that maybe someone at the park had gotten hurt. I got back to looking for the basket when I heard it again, closer. I realized that the screaming, the something-is-horribly wrong screaming, was coming from downstairs. In that moment my mommy adrenaline kicked in and I flew down the attic stairs to find Rebecca shrieking in agony. I took one look at her and realized why. Somehow while rummaging through her sewing supplies she had gotten a needle jammed all the way underneath her thumb nail. It went all the way down, almost to the end of her nail.
"Don't touch it" she screamed!
I ignored her and deftly pulled it out and held her close.
It was horrible, hard core, serious pain. I gave her a motrin, put some ice on her thumb, wiped away her tears and granted her computer time.
Reader, the wailing would not stop.
The pain, the agony, the misery were all expressed. She held nothing back.
Several hours later she was still whimpering about her injury. Loudly.
It's funny, because in so many ways Rebecca is just like me. We are so alike in fact that I find our difference in pain tolerance shocking.
When I get sick or have an injury I am all stoicism. I will mention my ailment, perhaps ask for help, but I do not wail. Nor do I carry on. I suffer in silence. Because that's what the nuns taught me to do.
"Offer it up to Jesus." was the instruction of the meanest nun I ever knew.
So I do. Except I don't offer it up to Jesus. I just suffer quietly.
David had no nuns in his life so no one told him to suffer in quiet dignity. He too expresses his injuries with vigor. About his injuries, he has much to say. His injuries are many, his ailments vast, and so I was positively tickled tonight when I realized the genetic source of Rebecca's style of pain management.
She gets it from her daddy and for some reason, probably because I love her daddy so much, I enjoyed noticing their similarity to each other.
They are comrades in complaint, minstrels of misery and they are mine.
It seems unlikely that either will change. Maybe I could hire a nun to come and work them over.
It's probably easier just to offer motrin and some ice cream.
And I always have my ear plugs...