Eve's Ear OR Telling it Backwards for Suspense over Sense

On Friday last week when both the kids were home from school, Eve wandered down from her room and over to the kitchen table where I was working on an assignment, or blogging, or surfing aimlessly, as she often does. I stopped and hugged her, as I often do, and then she leaned on the table looking at the computer, which presented her left profile to me. So I flipped her ear around to look at the back of her earlobe, which I often do (this makes sense later, I promise). And I saw a small opening in the back of her earlobe, and shining through this opening was a swath of silver metal.

And that's how I discovered my daughter is a cyborg.


Just kidding.

Eve's ears have always sort of been her Achilles heel....er.... yeah. When she was a baby, she had wax buildup behind them that had to be scraped out occasionally. When she was three, she had a small bump on her right ear that kept getting infected. We took her to the doctor and found out that it was an extra sinus that had to be operated on in order to close it (I almost linked to 'extra sinus', but the definition has some really gross stuff - it's a little hole, and it can cause problems, let's leave it at that. If you're one of those people that just HAS to know, you can Google it, but then don't blame me).

But then there was a blissful period of inner-and-outer ear health. No ear infections. No stitches. We were lulled into heedlessness.

We got her ears pierced.

It wasn't something I was anxious to do, but when the three other little girls who were all born at roughly the same time and who we hang out with were all going to get it done, I said Eve could get it done too. She didn't want to, so I said fine. Then, about a year later, she said "I think I'm brave enough to get my ears pierced now". I don't know that she put it exactly like that just to suck me in, but sucked in I was - she was being brave! We must go to the mall RIGHT NOW so she can be brave and reap the gratifying results of bravery!

The brief golden Age of Earrings:

Her ears don't like being pierced.

It was okay for a few months, then it wasn't. There was pus, and blood, and various other unmentionable things. We took them out and let them grow over. And then a few months later? We did it again. Because we are morons.

We wanted to problem solve. We wanted to know where we had gone wrong and fix it. We tried hideously expensive earrings, and those worked for a while (with the added awesomeness of having Eve pipe up with "I can't wear cheap stuff - I need gold or platinum" to complete strangers. We cleaned and disinfected nightly, sometimes hourly. We rotated and cleaned and disinfected some more. We finally settled on surgical wire earrings, and for a longer period than ever, things seemed resolved.

Until they weren't. Eve came upstairs crying because her ear wouldn't stop bleeding, and we realized we hadn't checked her ears for a few weeks, and the left one was a swollen, encysted mess out of which we then spent the next hour trying to extract her earring (there was a priceless moment when Matt looked over me and tried to mouth "I think it's bent inside her earlobe" and Eve said "I can see you - we're IN FRONT OF THE MIRROR"). Anyway, the earring finally came out, we mopped up the blood and declared ourselves finished with earrings for all time.

Until I flipped her ear around on Friday afternoon and realized we weren't quite finished with the earrings.

I thought to myself "okay, try not to freak out because that will just freak her out". So I said "HOLY SHIT, there's a chunk of METAL in your EAR!"

She freaked out. Angus came running upstairs. It was a whole big thing. I told her I would use my tweezers. I carefully sterilized the tweezers and washed my hands. Then I threw the tweezers across the room and, while she was looking at them sailing away I grabbed the hunk of metal with my fingernails and pried it out of her ear.

It was an earring back. A whole, big, butterfly earring back that my kid's earlobe ATE. It now has pride of place on the edge of the kitchen counter where we all walk by, look at it and shake our heads in disbelief.

I think we're done with earrings forever now. But obviously you just never know.


Nicole said…
AAAAHHHHHH! What a horrible story! An earring back IN HER EAR. Good lord. Poor Eve!

"I can't wear cheap stuff" - me either, babe, me either :)
Pam said…
LMAO! Ooops, shouldn't laugh at ear issues really. But it isn't what you post, it's how you post it. You can make pussy ears hil-ear-eous. THAT is true talent. And I think I love you just a little bit more for it. I'm glad Eve isn't a cyborg afterall.
Mary Lynn said…
Gah! Glad you got the cyborg bit out before it took over the rest of her body.

And let me extend my welcome to Eve to the Can't Wear Earrings club. I, too, am a member. I actually managed to do okay with them for a few years as a kid before my ear lobes turned into a pussy gooey icky mess. I tried off and on for a decade to get my ears to deal with metal, but no dice.

I've been thinking lately of trying again, though, but with platinum earrings to see if that would work. I still miss wearing them.
Oh. My God. That's super gross. And I have had bleeding earlobes for the past 30 years. I just can't do earrings either - though until recently I kept trying. For the longest time I wore hoops because although my ear would try to eat it, it never really could and I would just twist them to break the earring-eating-skin away and then it would bleed and be horrible, lather, rinse, repeat. I recently decided that I should just give up earrings. Why do I need to wear them anyway? If Eve has learned this lesson, she's a faster learner than I am.

Now she's free to get tattoos to express herself instead!
Patti said…
OMFG, I think I'm going to barf. I know I'm supposed to say something supportive and empathetic here, but it's all about me and my now churning stomach.

And I just saw Pam's comment about "pussy ears" and I'm thinking WTF kind of blog is this?
The Host said…
My ears also hate earrings. I also refuse to learn. They were first pierced when I was 8 and that was.... a really long time ago. Every few years I see pretty earrings, get my ears re-pierced, and suffer all over again.

Your daughter? Has not learned her lesson.
clara said…
Huh. See I thought it was going to be that Eve got her ears secretly pierced and you discovered it by seeing the back of her head..a mistake I myself made when I was 14 and got my ears DOUBLE pierced and then wore giant '80s earrings in the bottom hole to cover up the second hole and my mom was standing behind me one day and went "What is THAT you have TWO SETS of EARRINGS!"

But that's not what it was at all.

I have not-so-fond memories of my own pierced ear trauma but that ended somewhere before my acne/growth spurt years so thanks for bringing it all back. Yeesh!

I'm with Marilyn. Clearly some tattoos are in order.
Gwen said…
LOL! Poor Eve, she is a TOUCH skittish. Imagine her freaking out just because you said "HOLY SHIT, there's a chunk of METAL in your EAR!"
Finola said…
I had to stop wearing earrings for years and years, but a small pair of silver hoops caught my eye a couple of months ago, and I just had to try again. I have had no trouble at all!
Tell Eve to give it another go every 10 years or so :)
Krista said…
OH MY GOD. She'll be unique in 20 years... People won't believe that she has NO PIERCINGS??? and they wil be in awe. Until then she may pine a bit for them.

Also? I would not have been able to do that? Yuck.
StephLove said…
Oh yikes. I've already told my 5 year old she can't have her ears pierced until she's 13. This just strengthens that resolve.
Amber Strocel said…
Since you talked about this post, you know I had to read it.

I'm just glad I'm reading AFTER the earrings are a done deal, because otherwise there's no way I would have let my daughter do this thing. Now I'm just repeating how unlikely it is that this will happen to me.

La la la la la! I can't hear you!

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