When the girls were born, the first thing my husband did was look for some difference between them. Some identifying mark that would help us tell one from the other.
He didn't have to look long before finding one. Ashlyn, our precious Baby B, had a small freckle on her right cheek. Tiny. Discreet. But there.
We were told later that it's somewhat unusual for a baby to have a freckle of that type straight out of the womb. We smiled. It was God's little cheat sheet for us.
And how we used it! The thing about babies, is that they look alike, no matter if their identical or not. Put 2 or more balding, red, squalling things side by side, and you'll be confused as to which is which. And as they grew, the confusion only got worse. Now we had two baldies on the move, scooting here, toddling there.
I've lost count of how many times I've uttered the phrase: "Thank Goodness For That Freckle".
And I think Ashlyn liked it. It has become her symbol, of sorts; part of her identity. She's always been fine with it. Never seemed to bother it or be upset about it. And she understood that we looked at cheeks when talking to both of them, sorting out who had the freckle and who didn't before assigning a name. If that bothered her, she never let on.
So you can imagine my surprise when I wake her up yesterday to find that she's effectively picked the freckle off. First off, I cannot imagine how uncomfortable that process had to have been; and second, I'm not sure why she did it.
But she did.
And I can't say the results are very good. Nails being what they are, it's not quite as nicely done as a doctor would do, you see.
So I took her the doctor to check out the sore on her face. Is it okay? Will it get infected? A thorough check of it and a prescription for anti-fungal cream. 3x a day. Don't forget. (I won't). We also were given an appointment for a bona fide plastic surgeon to have it done the right way; to undo any damage she did.
And what about that freckle? Ashlyn has already expressed a sadness that it will be coming off. She probably should have thought of that before digging it off with her fingernails. Hind sight, right?
She despaired that she wouldn't be Ashlyn anymore.
I explained that her freckle is not what makes her Ashlyn. She'll still be Ash.
She despaired that it would hurt.
I told her it won't.
She delighted that they won't use anything sharp to cut it off. Just round things.
I'm letting her go with that one.
We'll see how this turns out.
How life is without That Freckle.