Early last week I was at work, walking through the warehouse. I stopped to talk to somebody, leaned against a pallet on a rack, and a sliver of splintered wood JAMMED up underneath my left thumbnail: deep.
And now I know why that’s such an effective torture technique. The pain was instant, and so intense I thought my brain stem exploded. I began howling, hopping around, and shaking my hand, as the person I was talking with blinked in confusion.
It was, without exaggeration, the most intense pain I believe I’ve ever experienced. And it didn’t let up. Oh, it came down from a 10, to about an 8. But it still hurt like a son of a bitch. If you stub your toe, or accidentally hit your thumb with a hammer, it hurts really bad, but lessens quickly. This shit didn’t lessen much. It was a plateau of misery, not a spike.
Within hours the thumbnail turned black on one side, and was super-sensitive. A breeze would throw me into a state of anguish. And if I actually hit it on something… well, have you ever attempted to shout profanity with your teeth clenched, and tears pooling in your eyes? I have.
You’d be surprised how often your thumb bangs on things, or comes in violent contact with stuff. Even when you’re favoring it, and trying not to let it happen.
The worst of these instances happened when I was rummaging through stacks of CDs in my office here, looking for a disc by Scruffy the Cat. They were an 80s college-rock band that was popular with the Peaches Records crowd, when I worked there. I’d just found out the lead singer died, and had an email conversation with Brad about it.
So, I was digging through the stacks, and RAMMED my thumb into the edge of a compact disc case. It felt like an electric current went through my body, and everything went back to a 10. Holy shitballs! This laughed in the face of all the former pain I’d endured during my life. I was hollering like a mental patient, moving from room to room. I don’t know why, but I felt compelled to move.
And then one morning, a couple of days ago… I woke up and my thumb didn’t really hurt anymore. The night before it seemed to be absorbing all the pain and human suffering within a five mile radius of me, and now it was done. Just like that, as if someone threw a switch.
Today, I’m pain free. Well, except for the ongoing emotional pain related to the loss of all my hopes and dreams… But physical pain, no. And while my thumb was pulsating like something from a Looney Tunes cartoon, I swore I’d never take pain-free for granted again. So, I’m trying to appreciate it.
For a Question, I’d like to know about some tiny little thing that unleashed the most suffering upon you. I’m not talking about a catastrophic car crash, or the kind of surgery where they have to lift the top of your skull off, or whatever. I mean some stupid household thing that really brought you to your knees. Tell us about it, won’t you? Use the comments section.
And thank you guys for reading!
I’ll see you next time.
Support us by doing your holiday shopping at Amazon!