Tuesday, July 22, 2014


I'm not sure how to share with you my (severe, unreasonable, and all encompassing) fear of my upcoming gum graft I have to have done. I don't come out looking so great in it. The anxiety is somewhat constant and uncomfortable. I am not much of a fan of anything being done in my mouth. I am not alone in this. Hello out there, fellow fearers of mouth work. How are you? You look great. What a smile.

A quick aside: What is a gum graft? Well, I will tell you. Sure- I will share this with you so you can UNDERSTAND. It is when they make and incision (gouge) into the roof of your mouth, slice (flay) some skin off in there, and adhere (smack) it to the receded gum area with stitches (of white hot death). Now, should one not want to use their own flesh for this procedure, one could choose that from a cadaver (dead-ass guy!) I believe my dad was offered some pig skin. I never was offered that, which is fine. Just may be another option out there.

I went ahead and booked this (SURGERY) procedure in March? Early April? And booked it out until late June when I would be out of school so I wouldn't have to use my mouth (for the 12 years of pain I was to experience!!!!!) much. And as a teacher, my mouth is flapping around all day long. Well, the man to (make me cry for daaaays!!!) do the procedure wasn't free until July. July 17th to be exact. Fine. I'll take it. I placed it on my calendar that is synched with Rob's so he could plan (my wake and funeral and/or psychiatric incarceration) to be home in case I couldn't pick up the kids from their activities in time.

I knew it was looming. I watched it from afar. I shared (obsessed about) my nerves with anyone who was (fool enough) in earshot to listen. The week of the procedure I couldn't sit still. I had a few hours to myself that week with kids in camps and lessons and I tried (reclined through) some yoga videos. (What are they called if they are on youtube and have nothing to do with a VCR?) I sat and read the same paragraph over and over (and over and over) in my book and my tea was more bitter than I was used to. I just kept needing to be up and about and out of the house. TJMaxx/Marshalls/Homegoods Co. was psyched that week.

I awake on Thursday and move through the motions of the day whilst listing my lasts. (My last cup of coffee with a mouth. My last lunches packed before I am fed intravenously. The last time I brush my teeth before they are all gnashed away.) I drop off my kids at camp and make the much too short (and distracted) drive to the dental office. I sign the paperwork that admits (I could die at any moment) there are risks with any procedure and that any infection I should pick up (that will kill me if the procedure doesn't) is my fault. 

I am then made to wait.
(Of course)
As there are running late.
(Of course)
And I warmly receive (with dagger eyes) the look of apologies and comfort from the staff behind the counter.

"Yes?" (I think?)
"Ke-uate? You come in."
"Um?" (Not sure how one messes that name, but I'm claiming that my name since I am the only one sitting there.)
"Yes? Ok?"

She is saying something to me. She is putting a bib on me. I am nodding appropriately I hope as she tells me that, "Yes, it hurts, OK? I mean, it has to hurt. But it isn't all bad. It is fine, really."
And I nod and try to focus on the sparks coming out of my eyes. I am shallow breathing and losing feeling in my fingers from having them so tightly entwined when the Gum Guy comes in.

On the phone.
And a hum starts in my ears as my blood moves about in annoyance.
On the phone?
And I take a deep breath as I hear him try to get off the phone.
(Who is this guy?)
And I make eye contact as he finally pleads his release from the speaker on the other end.
He extends his hand and says, 

"Hello. I must reschedule you. My wife's water just broke.

(cue banshee scream in the distant woods behind the office.)
"Your...wha? Are you serious?"
"Look at me! I am serious! She is having baby."
"Well, that is....great...." my mouth stops working as the reality dawns on me. This anxiety inducing situation isn't ending today. "Good stuff....."
"I don't know." he replies running his hands through his very much a lot a bunch of Lebanese hair roughly. 
(Uh, a little late now, buddy)
"Why? Is she early?" All thoughts are off of me!
"Yes! A week early!"
"Oh, that is nothing. That baby has been cooked for a few weeks now." Mother and child are fine so all thoughts back on me.
"I must go!"
"But, you know, it take a long time to have a baby if you just want to squeeze me in."
"I must go. The Dr. says she must come in with her broken water and such!"
"I'm sorry."
"Yes, well, of course you must go.... I do have this bib on......" taunting him with one more graft before becoming a dad. I mean, it is a life changing moment.
"I am to reschedule you!"
"Yes, OK. Yes. I'll just take? the bib off? then? if.....?"
"Thank you! Goodbye!"

I am not sure how I left without crying. My cheeks were bizarrely heavy with my disappointment. I mean....when I scheduled this procedure, his wife wasn't even SHOWING yet. And now she goes and gives birth early during my appointment. Alllllll so heavy and sad for me!

The appointment is rescheduled for a month later. He should be so sleep deprived by then that the graft should take on a whole new level of (life-threatening) awesome. I am going to buy some of those neon pointer post-its and adhere one to the proper tooth to make sure we get this done correctly.

I won't post about it, I swear. This is the last you will hear about this. Truly. I'm even kinda over it. (Sure. Sure.)

1 comment:

  1. My last dental procedure, I had a molar extracted. I asked for a little something to make it easier to come to get the procedure done. He gave me two valium - one for the night before and one for an hour before the procedure. It Helped! Perhaps your dentist may want to offer something like that?