Not your average suburban mom. I’m more your typical, normal, commonplace, everyday, garden-variety suburban mom. With a thesaurus.

Monday, August 6, 2012

It was like war. But on vacation.

Don't mess with Samuel L.
Jackson.  Or me.  Because
we have HAD it...

My vacation was fantastic.  I missed you all terribly and tomorrow I will tell you a little bit about the fine time we had at the beach.  But today I need to tell you a story.  I figuratively can not keep it inside any longer.

No. Freaking. Way.  I can not believe this happened.  It's one of those things so gross and horrible that you can't look away. And?  I told you so.

First, if you aren't already a super awesome Member of my blog why not? read this.  Now, from the files of I Can't Believe This Happened ...

...We have been vacationing in the same cottages on the same beach of Lake Huron (a mere 1/2 mile from my triathlon) for about twenty years.  As a vacationing angst-ridden teen I stewed in the cottage listening to Soul Asylum's Runaway Train and Guns N' Roses Don't Cry on my walkman, flipping the tapes over and over until carpal tunnel dictated I take a break and watch Real World reruns on MTV while the rest of my (much less emo) family had fun on the beach or strolled into town for ice cream and/or antiquing.  My time at the cottage dramatically improved when I had children and was forced to discover how nice and sunny the beach could be. However, in twenty years we have never had any kind of lake issue.

Then I unintentionally started a war.  (Probably.  I mean my blog is pretty far reaching, so I can't completely rule out that somewhere in the Leech Empire a little Leech General has read my blog and knows I'm all "not in my neighborhood" about leeches and feels personally attacked.  I'm considering myself warned.)

I was trying on my sister's Warrior Dash t-shirt (which are suh-weet this year and I will be getting my own on September 15th - hoorah!) when Brian came up from the beach carrying Esther.  He had a very intense eyeball conversation with me that I totally didn't understand until I saw Esther's leg. Then I correctly translated the eyeball exchange as Brian telling me, "Kelly, it is your duty as a mother not to freak the heck out.  Draw upon every ounce of self-restraint and reserve of love you have for this child to put on your Nonchalant Face.  Because your four year old has a leech on her leg."

This is, undoubtedly, the sickest picture I have ever taken or posted.  Except for the bloody one that will soon follow.  Heads up.
All you "there are no leeches in Lake Huron" haters?  There are totally leeches in Lake Huron.  And since they can't get me, they are going after my kids.  Not cool.

This is the exact moment I heard Samuel L. Jackson (in my head - we don't usually vacation with Sam) speaking his famous R-rated Snakes on a Plane quote, except he totally said "leeches" instead of "snakes," and "beach" instead of "plane."

The first thing I did was grab my camera call for my brother-in-law, who is an EMT in Detroit and therefore obviously treats leech attacks on a daily basis.  Thankfully he backed up my mad Wikipedia knowledge and advised us to wait and let it fall off once it got full.  (*throw up in my mouth a little*)  Esther was a little uncertain about this plan, but Uncle Andy closed the deal with his informative and convincing, "It won't hurt.  Doctors use leeches in the 1800's at the height of their medicinal use mainly for restoring circulation."

Esther was very cool under pressure mainly because she had no idea what was going on.  We waited about a half an hour until the little sucker was definitely full.  The only problem was it didn't detach the way it was supposed to, Wikipedia.  Then Esther noticed there was blood now running down her ankle and realized we are a bunch of big fat liars when we implied things were cool with a leech just chilling out on your body, and that this leech was really feeding off her body and she had every right to go completely spazz nuts.  This is when she freaked out.

Just a little blood.  Caused by a leech wound.  No big deal.
Mama to the rescue (kind of)
Wikipedia (whom I no longer fully trust, FYI) suggested using your fingernails to break the vacuum the leech has on the skin, but since I'm not taking my iron I didn't have any fingernails to use.  (A great foresight on my part, I might add.)  Samantha from Cottage #6 came to the rescue with her gorgeous, long, strong nails and even more compassionate heart.  She plucked the leech from Esther, earning Esther's never-ending love and my own special brand of hero worship thankfulness.

The moral of the story:

1.  You should obsessively research every paranoia you have because that info might will absolutely be put to use someday when you are fully ambushed by leeches.

2. Bite your fingernails.  If you don't you might be called upon to remove a leech from a preschoolers leg.  Which sucks.  (Haha - sucks.  Get it?)

P.S. I've been keeping my eye on Esther, since my main concern with leeches was always Weird Leech Disease, which I'm pretty sure turns you into a vampire.  But since she's a four year old girl, it's kind of hard to discern if she's sparkling because she's now immortal, or if she has been playing with her glitter headband.  But my Vampire Radar is on, so you can relax.  You're welcome.


  1. I always heard that your pour salt on them... It makes them "dry" up and fall off... You can try it next time. ;)

  2. Ditto the salt thing. When we went hiking in Nepal there were leeches that fell out of trees to attack. No lie. We all had salt packets stashed in our backpacks. So so so gross!

    1. Leeches falling out of trees would be my worst nightmare ever. I'm officially never hiking in Nepal. Maybe.

  3. OMG!! This post was both horrifying and hysterical!! The fact that you held it together as well as you did makes you my hero. I hope Esther is none the worse for the wear.

    Also, I'm emailing you on something else entirely, because I'm starting to think we're cosmically connected.


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