Monday, October 25, 2010

Dear Chewing, I miss you.

There are three things that currently are making chewing unpleasant enough as to be avoided where possible.

1 – It hurts.

2 – My front teeth don’t actually meet each other, making it necessary to use the back teeth, but…

3 – My back teeth are perilously close to some healing wounds, and also are entangled with annoying lengths of stitches.

The cause of all this consternation is the surgical removal of three wisdom teeth on Thursday of last week. (Well, reason 2 isn’t really connected to the wisdom teeth removal – it’s just a complication.)

I AM aware that the traditional age for this procedure is something closer to the 18 years at which I had my first wisdom tooth removed.  Some of us are just a little slower at gathering wisdom than others (as evidenced by my marriage to a certain individual who recently compared me to a royal individual – of the green ogre-ish animated variety).

So currently baby food is all the go.  Although I have had limited – if tiring – success with cutting soft food very small and pushing it against my front teeth with my tongue until it dissolves enough to swallow… and that’s how you spend an hour eating one slice of cheese…

I have learned some important lessons from this, however, that I share now with my eager audience (of one, if the number of comments received are any indication).

*Wisdom teeth removal under local anesthetic is not for the faint of heart.  If you have not yet had your wisdom teeth removed I suggest you skip to the next section (this is the literary equivalent of sticking your fingers in your ears and humming).  My very competent oral surgeon ensured there was NO PAIN, however I was still able to hear and sense when specific things happened.  For example, nothing gladdens the heart less than the sound of a tooth cracking.  Or the feeling of tooth movement (even without pain).  Also there is one saw that cuts inconvenient bits of jaw out of the way that is NOT quiet – cutting, as it is, into your HEAD which is rather close to your EARS.  There was one particular moment of reverberation which caused some rather charming vertigo.  This is even less fun than it sounds.  I was intensely glad we have pain relief now which makes it no longer necessary to bring three strong friends along to a tooth extraction.

*Surgery day is not the worst day.  Many people warned me that two days after is the worst, but for me Friday the day after was awful.  In typical under-stated Aussie fashion I would say that on Friday I felt ‘a bit average’ (this translates to ‘close to dead’).  I did miss the local high school football game.  They lost (sorry guys). The one source of comfort I got was knowing that somewhere on a dusty road in Africa a group of starving orphans, six miles from home, fetching water from a polluted creek, had all paused to hold a minutes silence in honour of my suffering. (‘Suffering’ = a minor surgery with anesthetic in a First World country in a sterile medical facility by competent medical staff, followed by a convalescence in the comfort of my own bed with nothing but a television, DVR box, laptop computer, Kindle, Big Bottle of Pills and the love, prayers and comfort of family and friends to keep me company.)

*Pudding cups/custard (of any flavour) eventually get boring.  No, really.

(Please don’t mention the above observation to the afore-mentioned orphans.)

*’Chipmunk’ Face is painful, obvious and a little embarrassing while it occurs… yet in some ways is preferable to ‘Hey Has That Person Had Surgery Or Is Their Face Just FAT’ Face.

*Husbands are loving and supportive creatures and are in no way likely to video call you from another continent just to laugh at your appearance (and then slander you on international social networking websites).  Oh wait, I think I got that one backwards.

And of course my final observation from my recent exciting venture into elective surgery…

*No one likes a whinger.  So suck it up, Princess!