I Burned my Thumb During Your First Trimester

Okay, I know you were just retching in the toilet bowl for the fourth time this morning but I’ll have you know, something happened while you were gone.


I burned my thumb while cooking breakfast for this family. It’s throbbing and bubbling up on my fingertip. Fannnntastic. It’s going to hurt anytime anything touches it, even a cool, soft breeze. It only follows that the uninvited yucky puss is going to eventually come out and get all over my hand at some unannounced time. Great.


Sure, I guess I’ll hold your hair back over the kitchen sink. But just so you’re aware, your golden strands are irritating what looks like a first-degree, possibly second-degree, burn. And, oh, well there you go. You just barfed over the dishes I just cleaned and I’m assuming I’ll be the one rewashing them.


Earlier, when you interrupted my video game to show me the ultrasound, you said the baby looked like a gummy bear. It’s funny you say that because this burn bubble is starting to look a lot like a gummy bear itself. It’s puffy and maybe even infected. Should I be concerned? I do have to work tomorrow, you know? Lord, if the guys find out I’ve been doing all the house chores I’ll never hear the end of it. One time Frank had to make dinners during his wife’s pregnancy and we haven’t stopped calling him Betty Crocker since.


The worst part about a burn is after it pops and drains that disgusting mess, it leaves behind a flap of skin which I’ll feel anytime I graze my hand upon anything. You haven’t asked, which is fine I guess, but the initial stinging pain has dissipated. It’s more of a subtle and consistent ache now. I hope it’s gone soon. I took the trash out, since it didn’t look like anyone else was going to anytime soon, and the drawstring slid over my thumb. I’m not risking it again, you’ll have to put a new bag in when you’re done in the bathroom. How many times have you gone in there? Does flushing add to the water bill?

Okay, finally some good news today. Frank just called, we’re grabbing beers after work tomorrow. There will be some peace in my life after all. I can’t wait for absolutely nothing to be on my mind. Nothing but if I’m going to get cheese with my pretzel or not. Perfect timing because my burn just popped. A band-aid should keep it from irritating me. One can only hope. You’re okay to watch the kids, right?


I wrote this little piece for McSweeney's. It's loosely based on an actual injury (small burns count as injuries, right?) I sustained during our last pregnancy. It was rejected, along with at least ten other submissions. I've taken a break from submitting there but I think I'm going to try another swing. They are the fastest out of all the places I've tried to get back to you. Problem is I don't have enough ideas for their style and interest plus my satire skills are in need of working out. We will see. Happy Mother's Day!

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