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Am not sure how old I was exactly, anywhere between 6 and 10yrs old but I always wanted to get my ears pierced. I would see all the little girls around me with little stud earrings in their ears and I would envy them so much. I was constantly nagging my mum asking her when I could get my ears pierced.

One day she had finally had enough of me nagging her, it was in the evening in the house and so we couldn’t go out anywhere to have them pierced, so I think she decided to scare me off the piercing my ears thing. She told me if you really want to get your ears pierced go bring me a needle and I will do it myself.

I am sure in her mind she thought she would scare me off the idea by suggesting she would put a sharp needle through my ears. Only that it did not scare me off, I went ahead and looked for a needle and brought it to her. She was surprised by my determination and she asked me repeatedly are you sure you want me to do this, and I would keep replying yes, yes, yes.

So she sat me down and lit a candle which she used to burn the tip of the needle just to disinfect the needle and she applied some spirit/alcohol on my ear lobe, she put a string through the eye of the needle and she put the needle through my ear lobe. The string was pulled through and she tied a little knot on the string, the string on my ear that was left behind was black and it looked like a little black loop and I loved it.

She advised me to clean it every day and if I kept up cleaning it well I would progress to the next step where we would take out the string and put a little soft stick or piece of dried grass in and then finally to an earring……..I was overwhelmed with joy and I even remember going out to pick pieces of dried grass asking if they were the right type.

I finally moved on to an earring and later in life got a few more piercing in my ears. In my mind I would always promise myself, if I have a little baby girl in future I would pierce her ears at 6 weeks old. We were always told 6 weeks was the perfect age, we were told that they would not feel pain and they were still too young to tag and pull at their ears. I would see small girls with small earrings studs in the ears and I would love how cute it looked. And I would see people in the mall bringing in tiny babies and I would cheer them on for such a good decision.

Only when I had my little baby, the idea of piercing her ears just didn’t sit well withear piercing me, I couldn’t imagine going to put that piercing gun on her little precious earlobes. So one day my sister and I were talking, she has a baby who is one week younger than Nia, so basically we have gone through all the milestones together. I asked her about piercing her babies ears and she told me her and her husband had decided it would be good for her to do it when she got older, let her have a say in it.

And that was all I needed to hear to help me be at peace with not piercing her ears. This is something she is going to have permanently, she should at least have a say in it, just like I did. Just because I wanted it so bad, doesn’t necessarily mean she will, she’s her own person and I know lots of grown people who never pierced their ears and never wanted to. It would be like putting a tattoo on her without her consent.

And that is why I never pierced my daughters ears, kids are a reflection of us and we frequently want them to have the things we wished we had but didn’t, but if we stop and realize they are a totally separate being from us, with different wishes, dreams, aspirations then we will find it easier to accept them and the decisions they make and in turn reduce disappointment in them.

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