The Chocolate Lady

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

A day in the life

The pain shooting through my tooth kept me up all night Monday. Finally, My Honey found me some darva or perca something or other, left over from either his bout with diverticulitis, or perhaps from my sinus infection a few months back. I know, dont take meds that arent prescribed to you for that particular situation, but pain does something to judgement.

The last coherent thing I remember, is asking how darned long it would take to kick in, this was 45 min. past ingestion. And then, I had hallucinations and itched all night, and figured even if I didnt know the name of the pill I took, it was from the morphine family, morphine makes me itch.

I have tried to avoid the tooth situation for the past months, and the lesson for today (which will be supported by additional folly), is not to put off what you know needs to be done, however difficult or painful.

Actually, this whole thing started on New Years Eve, with that horrible sinus infection. The sinus infection FELT like a toothache, and it had me flossing between two teeth like crazy, certain something was stuck or wrong there. It alerted me to a weirdness about the filing on my very back molar, upper left.

Just for the record, every single molar in my mouth has a silver filling, every one. I have had the same dentist for 3 decades, and I love him (sorry Aunt Julianne) because he has a "no pain" policy, and sticks to it. But he is far away, and I dont get to him much anymore, basically ever since Pooper got sick, the only medical appts. I purposefully make, are for him. Ive always been sort of proud of the fact that Ive never had a root canal, or crown, or anything like that (see Grandma J sometimes I brag ;) But I think that pride is really to cover up the shame of having silver fillings in every single molar (even though my loving dentist tells me it's really not my fault, cavities occur because of the hereditary nooks in your teeth, no matter how well you brush..and he also says you only need to brush once a day...see why I love him?)

Anyhoo.....back in January, I was alerted to some issues with this tooth, via the sinus infection episode, and have been flossing around it every since, because it always feels like something is stuck between that tooth and it's next door neighbor.

When I took Pooper to the pediatric dentist last month, I asked if he could just look and tell me what was going has a filling, and I floss around it like crazy, but it feels as if something is stuck in there.

He told me that it had started to decay UNDER THE FILLING and recommended getting to the dentist.

Ok, this is already longer and more boring than I had planned to write....

Fast forward to this toothache Sunday night. I wake up and realize that I cant spend my days on drugs, because I drive kids to school, and face the reality that it's time to return to the dentist, after a nearly 5 year absence.

The dentist that I love is too far away.

I spent time away from My Beloved, laundry, to find a dentist nearby. I found one, he fit me in. My Honey (not to be confused with My Beloved, laundry) came home at noon, so I could fix my tooth.

The kindly gentleman, and his sweet, dental assistant wife, oohed and ahhed at the x-ray of my tooth, and not in a good way, but in a way that says, "we are gonna need to do some extra injections, and we may need to refer you out for a specialist."

Which is precisely when my spirit left my body.

I wanted to channel Pooper, but I've never been good at that New Age stuff. Pooper is brave, he doesnt run and hide under the chair like Beauty does, or hyperventilate and beg for valium (by mouth, no IV's please), like I do, he just does what he needs to do, bravely, stoically.

The first injection, into my cheek, felt like a bolt of lightening shooting through my mouth. The second, which he informed me would be "a little more painful" was IN THE ROOF OF MY MOUTH!

While drilling and scraping, he made comments like, "this is coming out like soft leather, I can just scrape it out, the decay."

And, while I sat there, feeling a little bit like a homeless woman that I once saw, he hollowed out my molar. HOLLOW. He showed me! He said most dentists would have went straight for the root canal, but he is going to try to save it, that is, unless the nerve is involved, or the frail shell of a tooth breaks, no promises.

He packed the tooth with a medicated, temporary filling, and said that best case scenario, the nerve was not involved and we can keep the filling in for 4-6 weeks, and then come back and make a decision about a filling/crown, root canal, or just pulling the tooth altogether. He warned me that I might be in a lot of pain, and gave me his cell number, along with a prescription for penicillin and tylenol 3.

Thus far, no pain, no meds needed. But Im all worked up about what will become of my mouth. Not because I care about my teeth, because Im actually leaning towards just having him pull it out (he promised it wouldnt leave a big gaping hole.) Only because, Im not a big fan of pain, and pulling it out sounds slightly less painful than a root canal, or anything to do with the nerve.

I came home, and Little One had more of the liquid, putrid smelling diarrhea that has plagued her this weekend. Poor baby, mustard colored crap running down her legs. Thankfully, she has spent much of her days sleeping in someone's arms, so we are able to clean her up quickly, before it gets all over the carpet and stuff....which was what usually happened when Beauty was a baby.

With My Honey home with Little One, I spent the afternoon with the two older kids, at swim team practice. And afterwards, we did the equivalent of going to the dentist with a toothache, in the car arena....we took my van in to get the scheduled maintenance, AND check the screeching brakes.

The brakes have been screeching for a bit now (a longer bit than this honest gal will admit)...but in my defense, I cant take it in by myself, as I have little kids who need to be driven to school and such. And, I've asked My Honey to take it in for me, but he has been too embarassed by the crap-mobilish interior. Thankfully, he and the kids cleaned it out for me, and so last night we took it in.

We dropped it off. My Honey and the kids were in the van, and I followed in his rolls royce, er, I mean, Camry. I turned the engine off, and then helped him transfer the kids into the Camry, and I even did a mustard change on Little One. We all climbed into the car, and as I went to start it (the Camry, not the van) click, click, clicked. I tried again, and some wise-cracker yelled, "your battery is dead." I tried one more time, and he hollored, "that's not gonna make it any better."

What the heck? This car has been fine all day. I just drove here. Nothing was left on, the engine was off, while I waited 10 minutes before trying to drive my family back home. And now, the battery is dead? This isnt the car we brought in for service. If the battery on the van wants to die, go ahead, it will be in the shop anyways, but we need the camry, and the battery inside of it.

I, honestly, looked around, hoping to find the "battery-zapper" that must be installed, as a means of getting more customers, but couldnt find it.

Eventually, and I do mean eventually, because it took 3 sets up jumper cables before we could get the thing to start, and even then, it was a pair of broken jumper cables, missing a clamp, so you just hold the wire to the battery and it smokes and makes you and the kids think the car is going to blow up, but anyways...eventually they got it started.

So we drove home, and then I obsessed about the nerve of my tooth, AND the only car in the driveway that, most likely, would not start in the morning, and I would have to walk Pooper the mile to school for Earth Day, and Little One would create a gallon of mustard on the way.

Before retiring at 11pm, I went out to the car in my Pajamas (how very Grandma J! of me) and tried to start the car. Dang it all, if this car wasnt going to work, I wanted to know it now, not be surprised in the morning. But it started.

And this morning, it started.

The lesson, is to take care of your teeth and cars, with regular check-ups, dont wait until they rot and screech. And, dont park your car next to the service section of a certain car dealership, because they have installed a hidden battery-zapper.

**Editor's note** this post was written about Tuesday. Stay tuned for the post about Wednesday, two trips to the ER/Urgent Care, because that's about the only way I can get some quiet time to myself, apparently.


Grandma J said...

I can't believe you didn't go to Dr. "S". He wouldn't refer you all around town. If it's the last molar, I say let him pull it.

It seems like car batteries don't die a slow death like they used to in the olden days. They just die. How appropriate though, that it would happen on Earth Day. I always get such a kick out of the Crap Mobile...especially when I'm getting in and you say, "Don't sit on anything". HA!

You would have laughed this morning. I was on the phone with the IRS and the gal said we had a bad connection. I went out front in a night shirt and said "can you hear me now" rather loud.

If you go to Walmart, you will see lots of people wearing pajama bottoms.

Poor Little One!

Grandma J said...

Ummm the link in your post goes to a different "askgrandma" without the J. It's a good thing I checked because the first thing she says is "I haven't had a cigarette in a month".....Holy Mother of You-Know-Who!
Anyway, just thought I would pass that glitch along.

dgm said...

Ah yes, the teeth and car. Since I have a long commute I'm paranoid about breaking down on the road, so I'm pretty diligent about car maintenance. The teeth, however, I have to force myself to take care of because I so want to avoid the situation you describe. Tooth pain is absolutely dreadful.

Anonymous said...

Hope the tooth gets better! I had one cavity ever and I got it filled and then I was stressed and cracked the filling and had to have a root canal. Fun stuff!

The "mustard" image kinda grosses me out but I'm sure it's VERY accurate. Can't wait to hear about the ER trips!

v said...

I cant even comment....all i can do is sigh