Friday, June 12, 2015

Number one summer

5/25/14

It was my fault because I had just said, “nothing crazy has happened to me lately.”  I wish I could take   It’s like I’m cheering on an invisible sports team or constantly asking a question to whomever I pass by, while being wrapped like a mummy.
it back because now I find myself kicking off this summer season with my hand held high in the air, sporting a perpetual symbol for number one.
Most readers won’t know, but I also have a small homemade soap company that runs under the same name, “dirt don’t hurt.”  I make soap from scratch using fats and lye and give it natural smells and color and most of the time, it’s a hobby turned side job that I absolutely love.  The artistry of fragrance, the chemistry of the soap, and the mission to tell people to love nature and play in the outdoors because, as I remember hearing often when I was younger, “dirt don’t hurt.”
The problem is that lye does.
There are moments in one’s life that should not be replayed, either out of misery, fear, general stupidity, or in this case, all of the above.  Normally I use extreme caution when dealing with sodium hydroxide.  I wear protective gear, have a safe procedure.  But when alone and in a hurry, I did something that will forever haunt me: I only wore one glove.
You can imagine where this story is going. 
While holding a container of liquid that was around 200 degrees, a chemical reaction went awry and the whole mixture bubbled over like a volcano, covering my hand in burning liquid and speckling my body as I threw the container on the counter.  Immediately following I said a few dozen choice words, danced around in pain, held my hand under cold water and stripped down to reveal the rest of the burns before dumping all of the vinegar I own over myself.  (The vinegar neutralizes the sodium hydroxide.  So glad I paid attention in chemistry class.  Also really glad I don’t have close neighbors.) 
I’m also really glad for the world’s best mother-in-law, who drove me to the ER in my pajamas with my hand in a bucket of ice water. 
Thankfully, the small burns from the splashing are nearly gone, and there was no damage done to my kitchen.  The doctors say it will take about a month for my hand to heal, and while I know I’ll be surrounded by cookouts where the grilled hot dogs remind me of my fingers, I’m thankful that the injury was only what it was because it could have been much worse.  Not the best way to start off a summer, but once things heal and the bandages come off, I’ll be sure to make this summer definitely a number one.
With two gloves.


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