M was visiting my place for the weekend, but ducked out to the Royal Oak library for a few hours to get some studying done. (He has to retake his medical boards in less than a month.) I put on my gardening gloves and got to work weeding. As I pulled and dug and extracted as much piled up junk as possible, I felt a sharp pain in my thumb. I ignored it and kept working -- shortly after, I found myself pulling out an old stick covered with inch-long skinny thorns. "Oh," I thought to myself cleverly, "that's probably what hurt me."
As I tossed the thorny stick aside and continued to weed, my thumb continued to hurt. Wondering if I was bleeding, I pulled off my glove to inspect. No blood, but part of a thorn was sticking out of my thumb. Ah-ha! It had gone right through the glove and embedded itself firmly, then broken off. I attempted to pull it out with my fingers, but without success. There seemed to be a good bit still sticking out, so I went into my house to find some tweezers.
Of course the thorn had to be in my right thumb, and I am right-handed. I few efforts at pulling it out with my left hand only succeeded in breaking the end off. Darn. With an internal shrug, I went back to my gardening.
At some point, M texted me saying, "Don't get hypertension (high blood pressure)." He likes to give me helpful advice, so whenever in his studies he comes across something I should avoid, he lets me know. I texted back saying, "No problem, I have good blood pressure. But I may need your skills when you get back, I have a thorn issue."
By the time he returned, I had the whole section weeded, and I'd gone to the market and bought a few flats of petunias. I was busily digging holes and sticking the flowers in them as he pulled up.
He complimented me hard work and my green thumb, then I showed him the thorn in it. "Can you try to remove it? It really hurts." I took him inside and gave him the tweezers.
"Wait, are these the kind that come from a pocket knife?"
"Yes, it's all I had. But you're good at surgery, these should be enough.... right??"
He agreed to try, and began squeezing my thumb to get more of the splinter to poke out, and picking at the area with the little swiss army tweezers. It was very tender, and started hurting a lot more as he picked at the tiny area. After a few minutes of these efforts, I began whimpering in my best imitation of a puppy with a thorn in her paw. I tried to pull away, but he insisted he almost had it.
Finally he got just the right grip on the tiny thing poking out of my thumb, and pulled it out. Despite having looked very small, and despite having been broken off multiple times by our combined efforts, it was actually a fairly long and sharp thorn that had been still in my thumb. No wonder it hurt!
I sighed with relief and began washing my hands. He did a little victory dance. "My very first surgery performed on my girlfriend!" My hero.