Just took a look at myself in the mirror and let me tell you, it was not a pretty sight. If my jaw wasn’t so crazy sore, I would have screamed a frightful scream. I better just face the fact: I’m turning into some of the ugliest celebrities alive. Well, not altogether ugly, but let’s just say I’ve acquired their worst features. I have Dolly Parton’s huge red lips and Renée Zellweger’s fat face and Keira Knightley’s vampire-white cheeks. In all fairness they did warn me – “A little bit of swelling, dear, for the next 72 hours.” Still, it’s pretty terrifying to glance at yourself in the mirror and immediately have your brain connect to Dolly Parton.
If you haven’t guessed, I got my wisdom teeth out today. And I don’t know why but it seems like every time I’m melodramatic about things like that on my blog, I feel better. So if you care to read, the following will be a full account of my painful day. (I will most definitely be playing up the painful bits and juicing out the drama to make myself seem heroic. Just deal with it.)
So it all began a few weeks ago when we got a call from a certain oral surgeon’s secretary. Even on the phone, I could tell she was another one of those compulsive gum chewers. You know how some nicotine addicts go through a few packs of cigarettes each day? Well, this woman was probably chomping her way through a couple packs of Excel Minty-Fresh on a daily basis too. We’ll be referring to her as Ms. Chomp Chomp. Anyway, as Ms. Chomp Chomp gnawed on her gum, she and my mom arranged that I would be getting all three wisdom teeth yanked out of my mouth on Friday, August 13th. FRIDAY THE THIRTEENTH, PEOPLE! (I’m not actually superstitious but it adds to the drama. Like I said – heroic, that’s totally me.)
In the meantime, I watched a way-too-happy video about the dangers of dry sockets. Seriously, the woman was actually smiling as she talked about the holes from the wisdom teeth being infected with bacteria and the sickening odour that would follow. However, I couldn’t help smiling along with her when she described all the drugs I would be given and that wonderful world of deep, deep sleep I would enter for a full two hours. Oooooh! Gotta love the drugs! (The legal ones, of course.)
Anyway, it got me thinking that maybe it wouldn’t be so dreadful after all. I actually started looking forward to it (kind of). I had to starve myself twelve hours in advance of the surgery so on Thursday night I pigged out on roast chicken and apple pie (thanks, mom!) and chips and smoothies and …well, let’s just say I did the kitchen justice. (C’mon, you would too if you knew the next week you’d be living off soup and popsicles!)
The next morning, I slept in, watched a little “Very Potter Musical” (Did you know there’s a sequel?!! It’s just as totally awesome as the first, if you know what I mean.) , downed some disgusting pills that are supposed to help with the dry sockets (personally, I think they’re just to make you gag, throwing up any leftover food in your stomach), and headed off for the operation. When we arrived, Ms. Chomp Chomp was still on her lunch so we sat down in the waiting room. As I pretended to read, I mulled over how exciting this operation actually was. I mean, I was never a very adventurous kid. When little James was getting everyone to sign his cast, I was sitting in the corner attempting to brag about my asthma. And I’ve never been rushed to the hospital with a broken bone, just calmly arrived for an appointment scheduled to discuss my weird swallowing problem. (Seriously, they made me sit there for an hour watching me try to swallow a marshmallow without chewing it. A jumbo marshmallow, no less! I cheated when they turned around, those silly doctors.) Anyway, all that to say that this was an epic event in my medical history. I was about to have three teeth pulled out and given some intense stitches, all the while being drugged into the “risky, things-could-go-very-wrong” world of the subconscious.
And man, were those drugs strong! One minute, the surgeon was sticking a needle in my arm, humming along to Eleanor Rigby on the radio, and the next I was sitting in the car pointing out to my mom that there were “four red lights in front of us and the city was more messed up than I thought.” I must say I’m very pleased that I didn’t completely lose my vocabulary while I was stoned. Apparently I commented that the “cathedral was much more pleasing to the eye now that there were two towers rather than the usual asymmetrical one.” Ha,ha, haaaaa!
Finally we returned home where I insisted that I could “walk by myself, thank-you-very-much” before wobbling and swaying and being caught by my dad. From there I was forced into bed, given some more unpronounceable drugs, and fell once again asleep. All that acetaminophen (or whatever it’s called) must have worked it’s magic because it was two a.m. before I woke up, hobbled over to the mirror, screamed (well, tried), and began writing this. I just realized, this is probably the closest I’ll ever get to the stereotypical artist, drugged up and writing some of my best in the early hours of the morning. Look out John Lennon, it’s “Lucy In the Sky” all over again! Yeah, I know what you’re saying…“Don’t flatter yourself, Roz. You know you’ll never be as good as the ‘girl with kaleidoscope eyes,’ let alone rocker enough to try LSD.” True enough, true enough. But let me have my moment; today I’m a hero after all.