pain

Pain & Pages

It’s been a heck of a month for me, filled with pain and stupidity, almost all mine. A tooth that my dental bridge is attached to developed an infection behind it. The front of my mouth was so sore I couldn’t eat anything harder than a popsicle. Within a day, the right side of my face was swollen, and I was going through an ice pack every hour. While I waited to get in to see the dentist, I sucked on ice cubes, popsicles, and even tried a teething ring (that didn’t help at all). I used OraJel on my gums, and Aspercreme on my face, trying to relieve some of the pain. Tell you what, that OraJel stuff is a godsend! It numbs everything, at least for a while…  I finally got in to see the dentist, Dr Idiot. After taking x rays, all he could tell me was what I already knew. Infection. And that he couldn’t do anything to fix it, because the tooth is attached to the bridge, and they’d have to remove the entire bridge. He kept repeating the “Six grand” until I was on the brink of tears.

Until the late 90’s I had perfect teeth. Then, one Friday, working at a YMCA Before-and-After-School program, I had a seizure while on the playground with the kids. I fell face forward onto the blacktop, knocking out my top four front teeth. I had to have the stumps pulled, and for several years, wore a little flipper–fake teeth that I could take out. Then I finally was able to get this bridge put in, thanks to the folks at the OHSU Dental School, and until a few years ago, it was perfect, too. Then the front two teeth got chipped, and I look like a hillbilly meth addict. It’s gone downhill from there, with pain and some more chips. My insurance won’t pay to replace it, because it’s considered a cosmetic procedure. So if I want to fix the bridge, the teeth that are causing me pain, any of it, I have to figure out a way to come up with at least $6000. Which means I’m stuck with this damn broken bridge and pain forever–unless some fairy godparent sends me a check.

To add to the indignity, Dr Idiot refused to give me any good pain meds, but prescribed me something called Tramadol, which caused an allergic reaction that scared the hell out of me. Sent me into a huge panic attack, constricted breathing, and itching as well. When I called the office the next day to ask for a different pain med, he told me “if you’d just get over this, you’d be fine”  and “we don’t normally prescribe narcotics.” At this point I was crying and close to yelling at him, saying I didn’t want narcotics, just something that wouldn’t kill me, and that I was pretty sure we were no longer in a normal situation. He finally agreed to give me a new med. Of course, I didn’t get it until three days later. The antibiotic has helped a lot, and my face is no longer swollen, most of the pain is gone. I’ve four more days of antibiotics, and then we’ll see what happens.

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But that couldn’t possibly be the only pain the universe inflicted on me, right? I’m convinced that somewhere there’s a demon with a voodoo doll of me, and they’re randomly poking, prodding & pinching that doll all the fucking time. As soon as my face started feeling better, my sciatica started acting up, causing my left leg some serious pain. Also making me walk like Elmo’s friend Mr Noodle, which is just ridiculous.  Standing & walking hurt so bad that I just gave up and spent most the last two weeks in bed. From my spot here among the pillows I’ve done half a dozen small craft projects (crafting soothes me — I’ll do a post about these phone cases I’m decorating soon), read a ton, watched way too many beauty bloggers on YouTube, and binge watched huge amounts of Netflix. I’m on Season 6 of “Once Upon A Time” and frankly, I’m a bit annoyed, but I will save that for another day as well.

There was more stupidity, and that was mine involving the other side of my face. Just as one side is feeling & looking better, I managed to give myself a shiner. Yep. Yesterday morning I was sitting on the bed, dropped my phone, ad in reaching for it, slid off the bed onto the floor. Landed face first on the edge on a hard container sitting nearby, bruising my right brow bone. Last night when I went to bed it was tender but not bruised; this morning I looked in the mirror and damn! That whole area around my eye is pink and purple. I’ve never been so glad to have so much makeup at my disposal– in just a few minutes I covered the entire thing up, and I look fantastic! #iwokeuplikethis

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On a different note, I can’t post any book reviews because, well, the only stuff I seem to be reading these days is fanfiction. My tablet is full of all sorts of reading material: Oscar Wilde & Dorothy Parker. Bram Stoker & Edgar Allan Poe, Stephen King, Joe Hill & Owen King. Alton Brown & Julia Childs. Jane Austen & Elizabeth Berg & Maya Angelou & Oprah.  Self-help, mysteries, thrillers, erotica, poetry, memoirs, true crime, classics, biography, fantasy, young adult, and even some odd non-fiction. Yet I keep going back to the fanfiction, like a junkie goes back to the needle. One of my goals for 2018 was to read actual books. Maybe I should try it.

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