A rite of passage in our home when you turn 12, is that you get your ears pierced. By the time we get to Jensen, we’re going to have to come up with something fresh and new. This is my hope at least.
I don’t really know why we set 12 as the magical age. It may or may not have been the age that I got my own ears pierced, in the age when dinosaurs roamed the earth. I do remember that it was done in the doctor’s office, just in case the staff were needed to pin me down.
Back in the day, my father boasted that it took one doctor, two nurses, and one parent to hold me down in the event of a needle making an appearance at some time during the checkup.
Alas, I do remember sitting up on the table, the one with the stirrups, only then my mother explained that away as a “leg rest”, and calmly allowing the doctor to use the gun thingy to pierce me. I did not cry. I did not jump. I was likely in shock.
I remember that the recommended earring of choice was that of a stud type earring. My mother, being the rebel that she was, let me pick out a pair of gold smiley face earrings. Which in retrospect were difficult to clean and turn daily, but were totally cool.
I wore those earrings well into adulthood.
I didn’t know quite what to expect when taking Emme to the mall for the piercing. Especially since we’re talking about the child who turned pale and slid down the wall when I tried to explain to her the intricacies of menstruation. The same child who screamed loud enough to wake the deceased upon the removal of a miniature splinter. The same child that lost consciousness when her first bloodied tooth fell out of her head.
She was allowed to take her best girlfriend to share in the experience. This particular girlfriend is the one who years earlier, confided to Emme that getting your ears pierced felt like a car running over your head.
Let me take this moment to thank all of you for your piercing insights. We settled on Piercing Pagoda, after hearing of a couple of positive experiences at this location. In other words, no deaths were reported.
I directed Emme toward the 14 K selection, and she chose an understated pair of gold studs. Which surprised me a little, as I thought she would opt for the dangling fuzzy dice. Since she does contain my mother’s DNA and all.
Emme was uncharacteristically quiet as the technician carefully measured and marked her target. I knew she was nervous but was not about to show it. She told me later that she focused her attention on the adjacent Justice for Girls store and went on an imaginary spending spree.
That’s my girl.
Afterwards her entourage was treated to lunch in the food court and complementary ice cream.
That evening she took great care as she cleaned her ears with the obligatory solution and Q-tip. As I tucked her into bed she whispered, “This was the best day of my life.”
And right then I wanted to snatch her up in her blanket and sit in my imaginary glider rocker, and hold her until sleep was eminent.
All of this growing up broo-ha-ha is hard on a mommy’s heart. Her next right of passage will likely be the dreaded learner’s permit.
I may have to be sedated for that.