Sunday, May 22, 2011

Stop biting your nails, Rachel!

My daughter has bitten her nails all her life.  She has tried everything to quit and if there were a Nail Biters Anonymous Ten Step Program, she would have already been through the program, dragging herself to at least one meeting a week, speaking to her "sponsor" on the phone everyday.  I don't know how many times she has flashed her nails at me and said,  "I finally stopped biting my nails!" and then the next time I see her she has chewed them down to nubbins again.  When she was a little girl I caught her several times eyeing her toenails and in fact caught her trying to bite them  one time because there was nothing left on her fingers.  Soooooooooooooo.  As parents we need to be mindful of our vices and their affect on our children.

      I watched Jilli and Garrett this weekend and this is how things transpired:  Garrett was sitting on my lap as we watched "Tangled".   He was holding my hand and he began inserting his fingernails under my thumbnail and attempted to pry them from my nail bed.  Since it hurt a little, I moved my hand to away from him.  He found my hand again and continued his torture.
      "  Why are you doing that Garrett?"  I asked him. 
     "I like to."  He smiled at me and again dug his fingernail beneath mine.
     "OUCH!  Please don't do that.  It hurts me."  I plead and move my hand again. 
     We go back to watching the movie and soon he has my hand again.  I try to ignore him, thinking he will get his quota of fingernail torture soon.  But he doesn't.   

     Anyway.........................I was holding Jillian yesterday and she tried to flick my thumbnail from its bed. 
     "Ouch!  Stop that Jilli.  That hurts!"
     "She looks deeply into my eyes.   "What is that, Gamma?"
     What is that?  What is that?    I compose myself and quietly tell her,  "That's my fingernail."
     She looks very confused.  "What is that?"  she asks me, her eyes probing my soul.  She plucks my thumbnail again.
     I pick up her hand and point to each of her pretty little nails and do the same with the fingers on her other hand.  "These are your fingernails."  She's looks at me  with a question in her eyes.  Already I feel that she thinks I am operating on one brick shy of a pallet load...................and she's only two!
     We sit there for a few minutes staring at one another.  I can see the gears moving in her head.  Without looking down, she flicks my thumbnail again.........................................
     "Rachel!  Think of what you are doing to your kids!"

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