Feb 21, 2016

On Foreign Objects...

Full of triumphant sass and squirms

My third kid is my "nosy" one.

I'm not talking about butting into people's business (although she does that too). What I mean by "nosy" is that Tiny E's nose is the subject of her attention much more so than the boys' noses were for them. She's a little fixated on keeping her nose cleared out, and all the toddler-type actions that go along with that (Building Immunities! is my battle cry).

Such things gross out the Cat Daddy to no end, but I'm fairly nonplussed; mostly because I too was a nosy little kid, and it worked itself out.** To my knowledge I didn't horrify anyone with public nose habits after the age of 4 or so, so I'm pretty confident that she will also develop in an age appropriate way and for heaven's sake stop eating her boogers.

So while it was a first for us, I wasn't terribly shocked at today's events. I did think it was a little...different...that she asked me to help her get a "crystal" out of her nose. But given the time of year I figured hey, those boogers get dried up in there, and perhaps one was being a little stubborn. She suggested I use tweezers, which again I thought was a little...different...but also very logical. I was also very excited to use the tweezers. I affirmed my commitment to be very careful sticking pointy tweezers in her nose, and took a look.

Of course, upon further examination, I realized that by "crystal" she meant "bead she had stuck up there," and after a couple of tweezer attempts and few questions all became clear, including the fact that tweezers weren't going to cut it on this one. 

I sighed deeply, knowing that this would likely mean a visit to Urgent Care, but since she was breathing fine and in no pain I figured I would check the Internet for any magical tips to try first. I didn't find much, other than "Try tweezers" and a tip called the "Mother's Kiss," which it turns out is an actual technique that people try and succeed at.

In true euphemistic fashion, the Mother's Kiss is on the order of the Kiss of Life in that it involves the mouth but no actual kissing. It's simple, really--the parent blocks the clear nostril and then gives a quick breath into the kid's mouth, sending the air up thru the nose and, ideally, dislodging the foreign object.

I understood the mechanism of it, and I'm used to doing odd and/or gross things in the course of any particular parenting day, so it really didn't bother me. My biggest concern was that this particular bead was the kind with a hole in it, so I wondered if the air would go straight through the hole instead of forcing the bead out.

But still. After some encouragement from this post, I reasoned that it was worth a try. At worst it would be unsuccessful and we'd have to go to Urgent Care anyway, and I'd be thought a weirdo by my family for trying awkward things. Which of course they already think, so there was truly, truly nothing to lose.

So I sat Tiny E on the counter and explained I was going to pinch the clear side of her nose and blow into her mouth. After a few giggles and some fine-tuning and snot-wiping, I gave a quick puff (sort of CPR-style) and...POP! Out flew the bead on the first try. We talked about not sticking stuff up her nose, washed off the bead and discussed its future, and came to a non-agreement which is moot anyway because the bead has now been lost and forgotten somewhere in the recesses of my quirky old house. She agreed not to put anything up her nose (at daycare) anymore, but I only give her about a 55% shot on sticking to that one. She's my nosy one, after all.

When we played Two Lies and a Truth at dinner that night, I got to say I made a bead shoot out of Tiny E's nose by puffing air into her mouth, and my entire family was equal parts amused, impressed, and grossed out. I assume that the Cat Daddy was entirely thankful I saved us a doctor trip, and that it was my privilege and not his.

In conclusion, the human body is an amazing thing, and if you are curious about something, sticking it in your nose is certainly one way to see what happens next. Just make sure you have someone on hand who is willing to, um, blow it out if needed...

**Little known fact: if you stick crayon pieces up your nose--and if they don't stay stuck--they will eventually come out in the form of crumbly snot. It's a non-threatening and effective deterrent to sticking-things-up-one's-nose.