We had a hard set family rule that no one could get their ears pierced until they were of sound mind and at least ten years old.

I can’t remember why we ever chose ten as the number. We started with Hanna and after breaking her arm (twice) in as many months and losing every clothing item she had ever left the house with we thought double digits for any permanent holes that would require daily care just made sense.

Ellie, now almost ten is more responsible than our entire family combined. And by responsible, I mean bat-crap crazy when it comes to stressing herself out about being on time, making lists of things she needs to do and generally reminding us what needs to be done and when.

She has been asking if she can have her ears pierced for several years and we have always enforced the “You have to be ten because Hanna used to lose stuff” rule.”

It just occurred to us that allowing Ellie to break this rule just a few weeks shy of her tenth birthday wouldn’t cause anyone to instantly die or hate us for life (necessarily).

We made an appointment and Ellie read up on what would be involved in this major cosmetic surgery. She chose the earrings, she had q-tips, disinfectant and a picture of Alice Cooper at-the-ready and we were off.

The “surgeon” at the hair salon was excited about her role as “Giver of holes to children” and wasted no time talking about how to turn the earrings twice daily so the yellow pus and bacteria wouldn’t cause infection, hearing loss or parts of either ear lobe to spontaneously fall off.

I checked my phone for an emoji depicting my knees buckling and/or fainting while vomiting simultaneously but then I remembered, I don’t know how to look up emojis.

Ellie was in a daze and I could see her mouthing the words, “I don’t care about the pain, the bacteria or being limited to just one ear, I’m 9 and I want my ears pierced dammit!”

After a deep breath on the right and thirty deep breaths on the left, Ellie’s nine year old ears have small, amethyst studs (or some variation of a purple rock) for all the world to enjoy.

She has stockpiled thousands of q-tips and created a spreadsheet with daily reminders as to when to turn the earrings, boldly underlining number of spins around the backing, what to do if the stopper falls out/jams her in the neck while she sleeps or they turn her into a vampire.

Earrings are fun.

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