Dear Diary: Little Girls & Ear Piercing

This is a touchy subject…I know!

Ruby was a sweet little baby, a mere 8 months old and I decided (on her behalf) that she should have her ears pierced. I don’t know what I was thinking at the time. But… I wish I… WAITED!

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Shortly after Ruby was born, my best friend gifted her with a pair of beautiful diamond studs. She told me how it’s a tradition in their culture. I didn’t overthink it. I just took her to a clinic (as you do in Dubai) and had them pierced 1-2-3 with a gun. And that was that! (pictured above)

Oh I forgot to mention the fact that strangers would always ask if Ruby was a boy or a girl. It bothered me. It shouldn’t have! I thought by having them pierced it would be easier for people to differentiate her gender. Even if I dressed her in head-to-toe pink! Why did I care?

It was only months later that it started to make me question my actions as a young mother (24 years old). I remember reflecting back, thinking that perhaps I was being borderline cruel to her?

I then had a faint memory of my Mom taking me to get my ears pierced when I was just about to start grade one (5 years old). I could recall how excited I was. I was not scared of the pain, I just couldn’t wait to look like a big girl with sparkly little earrings. Why did I not wait so Ruby could remember too and feel that same excitement?

Around the age of 2, Ruby started to tell me how she did not like wearing her earrings. I didn’t get upset and simply removed them (actually kind of relieved!). Once in a very BLUE moon she would ask me to put them back in. This did not happen though for the last 2 + years!

Instead of the real mccoy, she preferred playing dress up with those cute little stick on gem earrings.

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Flash forward to 2016 (Ruby aged 5 years 9 months)

On a recent trip to Chicago, Ruby asked to have her American Girl Doll’s ears pierced. After she got her doll back she admired how how her doll looked with her studs and exclaimed how when she turns 6 she would love nothing more than to have her own ears pierced too. It made my eyes twinkle. Then I remembered how I had them pierced when she was a baby. If only I had waited…we could have enjoyed this special bonding time together that was lost years ago. I told her that her holes in her ears were indeed closed as she had not worn earrings for so long. I promised to take her to have them pierced on her birthday. She was so happy!

Just yesterday, Ruby brought up her birthday wish. She could hardly wait another 3 months! This time she asked me “Mommy can you just try and see if the holes are really closed?“. I didn’t want to inflict any pain on her. I told her it may hurt and that the chances were very high we would be unable to get the earrings through the old holes. She was optimistic though. She stood like a brave little girl as I disinfected an earring and tried putting it through the front of the ear, and then through the back, almost ready to give up…when suddenly, POP it went through! She was SO filled with glee. She admired herself in the mirror. I watched on as my heart began to fill with fondness, my little girl instantly looked so grown up! I was happy she didn’t have to feel pain a second time. And that it was almost like we created our own special moment to remember forever.

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Hours after we reopened the holes I took her to a nearby jewellery store. It was time for her to pick some new studs. I guess I was relieving the moment that I should have once waited for. Instead of me choosing her earrings for her at 6 months old, now it was her turn at nearly 6 years of age to choose her own. The way it should be (at least I think)!

Now I open the debate to what is right, wrong, or neither right nor wrong!

I was once a mother who:

  1. Pierced her infants ears without permission
  2. Waited until her daughter was old enough to decide HERSELF that she wanted to wear earrings

I can safely say… do yourself the favour and WAIT. Wait for your little princess to one day ask you HERSELF. She will tell you that she is ready and so worth the wait! It’s almost a symbol that your daughter is now a grown up girl!

 

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