*Warning: Anyone who is sensitive to dentist anxieties may not want to read entire entry. Just a fair warning kiddies.
I like my dentist a lot. She's pretty and sweet, caring and always willing to stop and talk about anything. She has a grand plan for my teeth and thinks that they are beautiful. Therefore, when she suggested that I bite the bullet and get two procedures in one sitting I had to agree. Why fret about two appointments when you can have them all taken care of in one session?
I was nervous yesterday to go in but that's par for the course in my world. I'm always a bit anxious about something. Its uncomfortable until the moment I get there - like getting on a plane or going down a roller coaster - there's not much to worry about now, is there? Plus its hard to be so selfishly pre-occupied when people are being bombed on the other side of the world, so I decided to forge on, and "lie back and think of England" if I got scared. I was eager to get into the seat and make my greetings. She took a look and said, "so, what were you thinking of today?" Funny question. I was thinking about London, and work, and people's teeth that are worse than mine, like Shane McGowan's, and the ladies out front were on about tamales..."Oh. My teeth? Yes we were going to fill these front ones by the gums and take care of a cavity in my wisdom tooth." Don't ask me why I still have two of my wisdom teeth, and don't ask me why only two out of four, but I'm partial to what my maker gave me and will keep those items until they cause a problem. Like tonsils and appendixes and gall bladders and stuff. Still got em all. The cavity seemed repairable.
The first part went easy breezy. I really don't care what they do as long as I'm numbed up. And I'm a pretty good patient - I hold equipment around my face, turn the right directions, open up as wide as I can get. She had given me a shot or two on the other side to prepare it, but I didn't feel like much was going on over there. She gave me another to that wisdom tooth area, and I could feel a pinch in the nerve she was hitting going all the way up the side of my head. I told her this, out of interest, and in an intellectual manner she named the nerve. Cool! Even if it did feel weird at least we knew what was going on down in there. She let this second round sit a minute and started filling up my mouth with stuff. "So are you feeling pretty numb on this side now?" she asked. "Umm, I don't know," I replied. "Well that's the wrong answer" she politely mumbled and she took all the junk out of my mouth. She gave me another shot. It still pinched, but I was praying this one would work. In she went, however, and I soon felt her hit a nerve.
[Sidenote of interest: What was strange was that the noise I was making, a subtle noise of protest, a shout out to the world above that it don't feel too good up in there, was embarrassingly akin to a small high-pitched grunt I am known to make during sex. I knew this, and was aware of it, but, well, that's the noise. That's the noise I am also going to make when you're fucking drilling on my toof nerve. Fuck.]
So she took everything out again and gave me yet another shot, this was probably the fourth large dose I had in this particular area. A few emergencies came in for referrals and I was left alone in the chair. Things were really getting frozen on my face at this point - my chin felt like Jay Leno's and the upper left side of my face was totally gone. Strangely enough the skin just outside my tooth wasn't quite, but no worry. I had to be ready to go by now. She said I needed like seven more minutes of drilling, so I felt I could handle it. Minutes passed and I went to blink but only one eyelid could come down on command. Wha? I felt my left eyelid with my fingertips, and it was completely asleep. Bizarro. I tried to blink again, staring out the 26th floor window at a window washer opposite . I panicked slightly, wondering if my eye fell asleep would it ever wake up? No wait, calm down E., its only your eyelid. Just hold it closed. Doctor came back and I told her what happened through swollen lips and a numb tongue. She had to scurry off. The assistant came in too and I looked up at her, blinking with one eye and said, "I think I've OD'd on anesthetic. Look, my eyelid fell asleep." I blinked then closed my good eye in frustration, but the other one stubbornly stayed open. 'Wow. "I've been doing this for eighteen years and I've never seen anything like that. I'll tell the doctor, hold on sweetie." I didn't have it in me to let her know the doctor already knew. She whispered over the emergency consultation, I can only wonder what that sounded like. She returned: "The doctor said you are going to be Ok."
When everyone had time for me again, and I'm tired of holding my eyelid down (it naturally wants to be open, which was news to me), we got back to work. I said I really didn't care if it wasn't numb at this point because I couldn't take any more novocaine. And guess what? Yeah you got it. That motherfucker still hurt like...a motherfucker. I needed to use the f-bomb twice in that sentence. I just held on for dear life and tried not to be a big ole crybaby and counted the seconds and monitored my eyelid floating up and then down (gaining control I guess) and felt really really sorry for myself.
When I stood up and looked in the mirror in the hallway I looked like a monster. One side of my face was totally blown up, and the eyelid that wanted to stay up stayed up higher than my normal one so it looked like my eyes were two different sizes. I frightened myself and dug for my sunglasses. I gave the receptionist ye old hand wave and busted out of there. Called my seccy from the street and asked her to do a few things, but she couldn't understand me. I had to start spelling words like "fast." Pathetic. Got on the train and blasted Foo Fighters on my headphones, despite the Brown Line Code of Library-Like Silence, so that I wouldn't cry. Held my head in my hand and of course saw cute boys everywhere, which I never ever see when I have a normally-shaped face. I am a monster! GGGRRRRR!