All my life, I have hidden my hands. Just don't look at them. Please, just don't ever look at them.
I feel this way about my hands for two reasons. One is within my control. One is not.
First, I am a nail biter. Not just a now-and-then nail chewer, but an all-the-time, down-to-the-quick, bite-it-till-it-bleeds/hurts nail biter. The only time I ever managed to stop biting my nails enough to be willing to present them at all was for our wedding, 31 years ago. Even then, I bit the thumb nail.
That thumb nail.
Which brings me to the second reason that I feel as I do about my hands: I have a birth defect that, while not all that obvious otherwise, becomes quite obvious when you look at my right hand. I was born with three thumbs - one on my left hand (duh!) and two on my right hand (huh?).
The rouge right thumb was removed when I was 18 months old. This is the only existing photo that shows it… kind of.
Fast forward fifty-seven years later, to yesterday. Kat came home for the weekend and suggested that she and I “get our nails done.” Apparently, this is something that her friends in junior high and high school did with their mothers and Kat always envied them. So, she decided, it was finally time.
“No WAY am I going to willingly show my hands to a stranger!” I protested. But Kat would have none of it. “It’s time to face your insecurities and to confront this habit,” she told me.
(Is this the beginning of the child parenting the parent? You know how that ends, don’t you…?)
So off we went. But first, the before photo. It was hard enough taking the damn photo, but attaching it here is…
OK, fine. I can hardly look. And you should just take a quick peek and move on.
There you go. Move on now.
Yes, you may call me Stubby. (Pretty bad, eh?)
I pretty much wanted to turn around and leave. Instead, we did this:
Yes, I freaked out when she put those dragon claws on me! But Kat reassured me that they’d cut them shorter.
I started by telling myself that this woman had probably seen far worse than my stubby nails, and that she really didn’t even care about my nails. That made it easier to stay in my seat. Once I relaxed into it, I even liked it!
And the best part?
(My hands sure look older than I had realized. But look! I have fingernails!)
(And possibly arthritis?!!)
Even my retarded thumb doesn’t look all that bad!
I just might replace that biting habit with a new habit of getting my nails done!
Thanks, Kat! Cheers to you!