Cutting Raspberry’s nails is a challenge. The very first time, Lucas was the one who cut her nails. Except he cut a little too deep and drew blood from a finger that bled for what felt like forever. We panicked and called the clinic. One trip to the doctor later (a very nice, understanding lady who was probably slightly amused by us, neurotic first-time parents), I’ve been the one cutting her nails ever since, and at the doctor’s wonderful suggestion, I’ve been doing it while she’s asleep.
It was relatively easy when she was younger — she slept more, and seemingly deeper too. These days, on a bad night, it might take me two hours to cut ten nails. Yes, two frigging hours. I might cut one or two nails before she wakes, at which point, I duck so as to not be seen and I might even crawl out of the room on my hands and knees (classy, I know). And then I wait it out before returning. Lather, rinse, repeat.
While I’m cutting her nails, I have an ongoing mental countdown. For instance: “Yay, three nails done. 70% more to go!” The countdown is what keeps me going on the bad nights (oh, by the way, a “good” night constitutes cutting all ten fingernails in ten minutes or less — those nights are few and far between). Some nights, when she wakes up every time I put the nail clipper to her nails, I just give up and try again another night. I can kinda tell what sort of night it’s going to be. If she curls her fingers around mine when I reach for her hand, or if her fingers are tightly clenched and it takes some immeasurable degree of strength to uncurl them, then cutting her nails will probably be a long, drawn-out process.
Every two weeks or so, I have to do this — unclench, clip, duck, unclench, clip, duck. She sometimes walks around with nails longer than any kid should have because I dread having to cut her nails, but obviously have to do so before the nails become talons.
And don’t even get me started on toenails. For some reason, she’s even more sensitive to those being cut than her fingernails. It took me five months before I first cut her toenails. These days, I try to draw it out over a month or two. It’s long enough that her toenails have formed to the curvature of her toe.
Tonight, it’s taken me about an hour and a half. I’m 90% done and I’ve given up trying to clip her toenails tonight, even though they desperately need to be. Okay, time to do that last nail so I can turn the light off and not have teeny nails in my mind for the rest of the night.Advertisements