6.19.2007

Good thing I lead such a sedentary lifestyle

Over a week ago I was using our apartment's little tiny ironing board. It's the kind with the wee little legs so you have to set the thing on the ground or on top of a table to use it. I was sitting cross-legged on the living room carpet, ironing away at a new red fitted sheet to cover my box-spring. (Note: Pictures of new improved fabulous room coming soon!)

Anyway, during the ironing I leaned forward a bit too far to grab some more sheet and pulled back a bit too far with the hand holding the iron. So I backed the thing onto my leg and gave myself a nice right-triangle-shaped burn. I thought I was taking good care of it but it turns out that I didn't keep medicine and bandages on it for long enough. Am back to doing that, but it's kind of not getting any better and looks really, really gross. I'll probably lose the leg.

So on Sunday in Relief Society the teacher was wrapping up her lesson on integrity. (She did a great job, btw.) Near the end, she said we should take private inventory and see where we might be falling short. And that it's not always pleasant to acknowledge our weaknesses but it's better because then we can work on them and ask for the Lord's help.

And then this happened.

Teacher: Now, I hope this analogy won't offend anyone, but I'm a nurse and so it's one that really makes sense to me. Let's say you've got a really bad sore on your body.

Me: (looks down at leg--check)

Teacher: Would you just keep putting the same dirty dressing over that sore day after day and expect it to get better? What do you think would happen if you did that? If you just added bacteria and filth to that open, weeping, crusty sore?

Me: (starting to feel a bit queasy--also my stomach was really empty, which didn't help)

She continued to talk about how the sore would get infected and start to putrefy and smell. And it won't get better if you keep it in its own filth and what you need to be doing is changing the dressing and scraping away the diseased flesh and cleaning it and letting it get air and light.

I started turning green at this point. I mean, it's a very, very effective metaphor but I was kind of about to throw up everywhere. She kept going while I writhed in my seat. But I didn't feel like I could really raise my arm and beg her to stop without looking like a supersensitive wimp or worse.

"Sorry, but this is all just a bit too close to home!" (as I hold up bandaged, diseased leg)

"Sorry, not to be all 'the wicked take the truth to be hard' but I'd like you to stop talking right now about all this 'cleansing our lives' stuff because maybe not everyone wants to hear about that."

"Sorry. I'm allergic to metaphors. They give me hives."

"Sorry, it's just that I'm really hungry and you talking about all that diseased flesh is really doing things to my stomach."

13 comments:

Frey said... [reply]

You might want to let your husband do the drilling and maybe even the sewing too.
I'm sorry about your iron burn. I've had a couple and the scar lasts forever. You might want to have a another triangle put on and make a butterfly.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Frey, if I could have my way I'd have my husband do ALL those things, and maybe birth the babies while he's at it. But hey, if getting hurt is what it takes to pass the chore on to someone else then I could absolutely work that.

Lady Susan said... [reply]

You iron your sheets??!! That alone makes you a much better person than I will ever be.

Sorry about the burn. Butter is supposed to work really well. Something I read once....in a novel. However, you should probably stick to aloe.

Nemesis said... [reply]

Lady Susan, I don't normally iron my sheets as that would qualify under the category of "work." I did, however, once have a lovely Scottish roommate who ironed everything, including her sheets and underwear. When we'd tease her she'd go into a full-on brogue and we knew it was actually her mother speaking.

But I'd just opened these sheets so they were really wrinkly and they were going on the box spring (so they'd be in full view). I only ironed the bits that would be showing.

Like I'm ever doing THAT again . . .

Sarita said... [reply]

I coworker very recently had a big sore on her leg from an accident that wasnt taken care of properly. When it got disgusting enough to actually do something about it, she found out that she had gangrene. Part of her leg was removed last week. FYI.

Anonymous said... [reply]

Okay, enough, this is your mother speaking. Buy a tube of Neosporin and smear the wound liberally. I'm not sure if you are supposed to cover burns or not. I would until you get a professional answer. or check online. Google: burned flesh! I burned my arm on the oven a year ago and still have a scar.

coolmom

Nemesis said... [reply]

Mom, I know about the Neosporin. That's what I've been doing. I just thought it was getting better so I stopped and then it wasn't getting better. So I've been using it again for the past several days.

Although I may have made some progress this morning when I peeled off a bunch of dead stuff and then slapped a load of Neosporin & a fresh bandage on (because old crusty bandages are bad, I've just learned in church). We'll see how it looks tonight.

Kimberly Bluestocking: said... [reply]

Re: the butter suggestion, they used to bleed people in novels, too. I'd stick with the Neosporin. :)

lilcis said... [reply]

"I'll probably lose the leg."

You crack me up!

Jér said... [reply]

When I was fifteen, I was a "counselor" for a day craft-camp put on by a local fabric store. My job was to wield the iron at the appliqué table, since they didn't trust the 8- and 9-year-olds with it. Well, at one point, one of the kids distracted me and I gave myself a nice burn on the forearm with the tip of the iron. It hurt, but I don't think I put anything on it at all, and it healed fairly quickly by itself. What was cool, though, was that because of the angle and the configuration of the steam-release holes, it ended up looking like a goldfish. It has since mostly faded, though, and the bit that's left doesn't look like anything. What a tragedy.

On a slightly more serious note, overdoing the Neosporin can do more harm than good, since germs are more likely to stick to a surface that is slathered with what amounts to medicated petroleum jelly. Also, fat- and oil-based products aren't usually recommended for burns, although at this point it sounds like it's more of a suppurating wound. In which case you should probably see a doctor anyway. :D

amyjane said... [reply]

Who knew there were so may do's and don'ts regarding Neosporin usage?
Also I had forgotten about the scottish sheet ironing that went on that year. Do we know what ever happened to her? "Doooon't take the beags to D.I. Thooose are me winter jumpahs and woolens."

Jimmy said... [reply]

This caused me to cringe in two instances. A few years back, the dog toppled the ironing board, and I caught the iron in both hands. Then I realized it was plugged in, of course. I blew out the two front windows with my ensuing howl.

Then I followed the teacher's tale, and was feeling a bit queasy there right along with ya.

By the way, with my burns, it was Neosporin, bandages, and washings 4 times a day with antiseptic crap the doc gave me.

April said... [reply]

I have no advice, just sympathies.

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