Saturday I was slicing poblano peppers for our lunch. Then when I was finished and without thinking, I touched my eye. "OWWWwwww!" I hollered because it burned. (Which surprised me; poblano peppers are really mild.) It's not like I'm a quiet (or graceful) cook. I cry out when I misread a recipe (it happens quite often) or break a dish or even drop something unbreakable. My family has largely learned to tune me out at such times but they must have sensed, like the mothers of toddlers do, that I was actually in pain.
Instantly Emma was from the piano to my side, Braeden bolted from the computer to the top of the stairs, "What happened?" they all wanted to know, "What do you need?" Emma got me a clean dish towel and I asked Braeden for eye drops. He had Mark help him find them--Mark, the one with allergies, knows where to find such things. Then Adam was there. I don't know where he had been earlier but everyone convened in the kitchen for the big event: Mom Got Pepper Oil in Her Eye and It's Burning.
Adam told me eye drops wouldn't help and he said I needed to rinse my eye with water. He coaxed me toward the sink like I was a skittish horse. (I hate having anything put in my eye.) He got the water to a good temperature and held my hair while I leaned over and he sprayed my eye with water. "Keep blinking," he said calmly, "Open your eye wide and blink."
And then I felt better. It wasn't such a big deal. What was a big deal to me was the scramble. I felt loved by the way they all rushed to my aid. Even with something small, I live with four people that drop everything when I need them.
It's kind of worth touching your eye with pepper oil on your finger.
(Although it does burn.)