It had been going on for a few weeks. I had a knife in my foot. I knew it as surely as I knew the nose on my face. My preference with all things medical is to pretend that they are not happening. I’ve never met an illness that responded better to antibiotics than the silent treatment and I have lived a very happy life of avoiding the doctor altogether. If I stopped ignoring it and actually LOOKED to see what was slicing into my foot, it would surely demand treatment-having been acknowledged, so every day I would tie on my running shoes and work like the Dickens to outrun the rusty dagger that had taken up residence in the ball of my right hill pusher. But the pokey bastard was persistent. Stubborn. Rude even. Finally I was forced to do the one thing that I swore to never do–consult an expert.
On the couch, with my foot shoved into my kind husband’s face (yes, he was totally on his way to work and trying to get out the door and, at the time, I couldn’t have cared but in retrospect, I could have probably been a little nicer). He said, “Well, with the expertise that I have–given my AIRCRAFT TRAINING and CRIMINAL JUSTICE DEGREE (yes, he’s an ass, but he’s my kind of ass so I let these little tantrums go sometimes and quietly put sugar in his carbless dishes with a smile) I’m pretty sure that this is a Plantar’s Wart.”
“A WART?! You must be mistaken! I’m adorable. Adorable people don’t get warts!!” I actually shouted this at my husband. Why men aren’t lining up to take me away from him is one of the great mysteries of the world. “No. No, you must be mistaken. Look again!” There’s a very small chance that I pushed my foot at his incredulous face again (he was egging me on with all this unnecessary talk about warts, this is not my fault).
“Well,” he uttered, tossing my foot aside, “It is a plantars wart. And you’re just gonna have to deal with it.” There were a few minutes of pouting, then I slunk away irritated. How dare he. I was obviously on the verge of expiration. This was a mortal wound. I was in PAIN and all that he could offer was a theory that I might have a dirty, common wart.
Alright, I’m going to admit it (I couldn’t be any more mortified anyway) it is true that once, in 2011, I almost wore a pair of unflattering pants out of the house. I got nearly as far as the door before I caught a glimpse of my ass in the glass of a hallway picture. Also there was an incident once in 2006 when I almost passed gas. Almost. So I’m not saying that I’m perfect. What I’m saying is that I don’t. Get. Warts.
That morning, as I was getting ready for my run I thought, “I wonder if I trimmed my toenails shorter, if my feet would be more comfortable when I run.” Nope, she ain’t just a river in Egypt. I get it. And I had yet, at this point, to even look at that offending molecule on the bottom of my foot. So, as I sat, trimmer in hand, ready to make my shoes the most comfortable Sauconys in the world, I thought that maybe I’d take a teeny gander at this so called wart. And I couldn’t believe what I saw. The tiniest black dot! It looked like I had a piece of sand stuck to my foot! This was the knife? This was the dagger? THIS was the reason I had been treadmill gimping?! OH, HELL NO!! And, all of a sudden, a bitchy cacophony of rude insults and unflattering epithets came from somewhere outside of my darling person and out of my ladylike mouth. In a fit of black dot rage, I stabbed at the offending object with the clippers. Hard. And something oozed out.
As I was already disowning this foot (I mean, the nerve of having a wart, right?), it didn’t even occur to me to be additionally irritated at it’s verve. I mean, leaking? When would this horror end?! So, I did what any rational, educated, calm and methodical woman would do. I assembled a professional surgery kit. By professional surgery kit, I mean several implements from my manicure kit that I sterilized with nail polish remover and laid out on a towel on my bed. I took a bracing shot of antiseptic (coffee), tied back my hair and got to work.
I’m going to fast forward here through about five hours (5 minutes) of professional scalpel craftsmanship (cuticle trimmer poking), heroic stoicism during self surgery (cursing, flailing, tantrum throwing) and stunning suturing (wrinkling my nose and choosing carefully between a Star Wars or a camo BandAid–both seemed fitting of my soldieresque bravery at this point) to tell you the moral of this story.
I had a splinter. An offensive, black, quarter inch long piece of wood that was stuck in the ball of my foot masquerading as a knife wielding Plantar’s wart. That’s not the moral, though, that’s the stunning and strange conclusion. The moral here is that my husband was WRONG and I was RIGHT. I am way too freaking adorable to ever get a wart. Also, I am now open and available to receive any and all honorary medical school degrees. Especially if they are conferred on me in a tropical location with all expenses paid. My feet want to recover by running on a beach.