Monday, January 23, 2012

I'm a biter.

Let me ask you a question: how aware are you of your fingernails?

Mine might as well have a pulse.  I think about them every waking second of every day.  There they are, just chilling at the ends of my fingers, taunting me.  I might as well be a recovering alcoholic with a glass of wine in my hand, debating on whether or not I have the strength to resist the temptation.

Perhaps I should back up a bit... here's the deal: I am a lifelong nail biter.  That is eighteen years worth of a bad habit (give or take the time it took for me to grow teeth).  For as long as I can remember, my response to nearly every situation has been to chew on my fingers. Whether I was nervous, bored, excited, pensive, or feeling any sort of conscious emotion at all, my teeth took it out on my phalanges.  Seriously.  It was a problem.  I didn't have any fingernails to speak of, my cuticles were bloody, and the skin where the nails should have been was constantly growing slightly infected.

I bring this up now because approximately five weeks ago, I stopped.  There I was, essentially devouring one of my own fingers as a snack, when I decided that I was finished with being such a disgusting person.  I immediately went to the drugstore, bought this overpriced nail strengthener stuff and a bottle of clear polish, and never looked back.  Not once have I nibbled on a nail since that fateful day.

And it's killing me.  Kicking a lifelong habit requires a ridiculous level of determination and self-discipline.  To be honest, I couldn't have done it without beginning a couple of crutch habits; I have to apply a new coat of nail polish daily, so that I can pick off the old polish.  This eases whatever weird mental craving I have for the destruction of all that is fingernails.

Whatever.  I'm still proud of myself.  Go ahead and judge me if you must.

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