In the great scheme of things it may seem minor, but when the pain is so intense it knocks you to your knees, creates stars around your head, and causes complete blackness in your field of vision, it becomes a major thing. Even if just for a minute.

I wear my nails long. Well not as long as the world record holder whose fingernail measures an astounding, and disgusting might I add, 28 ft 4.5 in. I can imagine the pain she would feel if her nail were ever broken. Not just physical pain, but probably monetary pain, and emotional pain at no longer having the “world record fingernail length”. As for me, my pain is immediate, intense and knee-buckling, as well as inducing a rapid swearing tirade. I’m lucky, if when broken, my nails don’t cause bleeding. If blood is involved the entire process and story change relative to how much blood loss is involved.

Nothing is ever simple in my life. I can’t just crack a nail. Or break one above the quick line. Oh no. I crack mine well past the quick, but thanks to my Angel nail technician, they rarely break all the way through to the natural nail. They simply crack the acrylic and bruise the nail bed, and cause enough pain to require morphine, if it were available. For those of you who have never had acrylic nails, trust me when I say, it takes a long time to heal the bruise caused by a broken nail. It also renders your hands completely useless. Well at least the finger on which the nail is broken becomes useless.

This past weekend I broke the nail on the little finger on my left hand. If you aren’t familiar with the need for this finger, try typing without using a’s. Once the fingernail on any finger is compromised or gone, it’s like not having that finger at all. For me, my typing slows to a crawl. A worse fate happens when all the nails are gone in preparation for installation of a new set of nails.

When that happens it’s beyond bizarre. Your fingers feel like nubs at best. I can’t manage to take my contacts out, let alone try to put them back in. Washing my hair becomes impossible – there is nothing to scrub with, and horror of horrors I can feel my scalp with my finger tips. I just don’t know what to do with what I’m feeling. As for typing, which is essentially part of who I am – forget it. I can feel the keys but all the letters and words get garbled and my typing speed slows to about 1 cwp, at best.

I am comfortable with not feeling with my finger tips. I can feel all I need with the rest of my fingers. I need my nails to function. I need my nails to make me feel like me. I need my nails . Gotta run. Angel is waiting.

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