Are you ready for the “toe story” that goes with the foot photo below?
As you know, you can not push healing to happen. When there is trauma in the system, going slow, safety and consent are extra important.
My buddy Abbie had a painful ingrown toenail. I’ve never had one but watching her toe swell a bit more each day did not look fun. We made it to the foot Doctor the other day. He was super informative, telling her everything he needed to do before he did it and waiting for her to say she is ready. Still she is terrified of medical procedures, shaking and panting. She required two shots to numb her toe. As her grip clenched my arm more tightly, I listened to her coaching herself, breathing into her body, calling on brave role models and courageously choosing to have the shots, “I can do this, I won’t die!”
Have you asked yourself these questions: What am I willing to risk? What is the worse that can happen? What are the possibilities that unfold when I move through fear? I surely have. Choosing not to try is painful. And our trauma response is not optional. Healing trauma is a continuous process that can run very deep in our body brain system.
For Abbie there was a window of possibility where being without pain became stronger than everything in her that bolted against receiving the shots. Not an easy scene for any parent. I wondered about the Doctor as he skillfully plunged in, let the toe numb, and easily cut out a slice of nail with a protruding head. Bright blood gushing. After her toenail was cleared, blood cleaned up, bandage put on, tears wiped, Abby exclaimed, “Mom, I did it!”
Today she grins from ear to ear empowered with confidence I have not seen in a while. I am a relieved and proud Mama. Once again, she is considering getting a bridge for her front teeth. She is also enjoying the extra attention a wound receives.
One of the things we did to celebrate this truly huge and brave accomplishment? Friday night pizza and movies! We’re watching Heartland on Netflix, a good family series. We made a cauliflower crust pizza from scratch. It is so good when you don’t want a flour crust. We will add it to our cycle of meals. I miss not having daughters in the house like my oldest where we can run out the door to the beach, or to the woods for a hike.
I took myself out to meet a friend and enjoy these amazing redwoods. So fresh after two days of rainfall. Noticing the damage from the fires. Trees are so deeply connected and sturdy. Many are standing side ways. Their roots run deep and have so much to teach us, especially about our web of connection for healing.