Our kids may tire of hearing our advice, but good reasons often support what we say. I encountered some new personal advice not long ago that shocked my kids. They laughed because they thought I was joking. I was serious indeed. My advice seemed strange, but even strange parental advice is rooted in experience which is a wise teacher. Their own future advice is percolating in their experiences unbeknownst to them. Lucky for them, I will save them my own grave experience if they will only heed my advice. While they roll their eyes now, I bet some of our outlandish or silly stories, maybe especially the bizarre ones, are going to be shared one day around the kitchen table. Their faces will be grave as they dish out my advice: watch out for the strangled toe. (shudder)
What? For real? Yes! Have you ever strangled your toe in your sleep?
The story behind the advice
I have. Let me tell you, it is agonizing. I awoke in terrible pain as my husband was getting ready for work.
“There’s something wrong with my toe,” I whimpered, thrusting my foot at him. I couldn’t see what was wrong with my toe. For one, I can’t see something small that well from that distance. Two, I probably should work on my flexibility.
He claimed he couldn’t see anything except what looked like evidence of strangulation. What a nut, I thought.
I hobbled to the bathroom to soak my mysterious injury in a tub of Epson salt, moaning all the while that I couldn’t figure out how this could happen. As I babbled on, the mention of my socks alerted my husband to a clue.
He demanded to see my socks. At the end of one sock, where my big toe would rest, was a tiny hole, about the size of my pinky finger’s nail. My toe can’t fit through that tiny hole, I protested, but that was what had happened. The lines of indentation proved it. The mystery was solved. I must have shoved the sock off in my sleep as I tried to find relief from a bad dream. The pain was all too real.
Now, I’m afraid of wearing socks to bed—socks with holes in them anyway. As the blood seeped back into the toe, the pain lessened. A few hours later, all I had was my dramatic story to tell my kids, who just shook their heads in disbelief.
Advice: don’t wear socks with holes in them
Now I’m an avid advocate of not wearing holey socks to bed. “Beware of the strangled toe!”
Sure they all laugh now, but how horrifying it would have been to wake up toe-less or something.
My kids may all gripe about my advice at times, but there is a reason behind everything. Learn from your elders, I say. Save yourself some pain. Don’t do that. Do this instead.
Of course, I wouldn’t have to wear socks to bed if I weren’t so cold all the time, but I haven’t discovered how to increase my internal thermostat so layering is what I do best.
Cutting off blood to our toe is excruciating. Cutting off any life source will always cause pain. That’s why we give advice. We want to save others from pain. The sources of our pain, however, come in many forms.
Is any of your advice based on a strange occurrence?