It all started with a stick of bubblegum at Five Below.
One day at that particular convenience store, I must have been in line buying something of a bric-a-brac nature, as usual dollar stores go. (And so you know, the Five Below chain sells anything and everything for five dollars or less.) The candy section was just adjacent to the cashiers, so I could very easily go up to smell the sugary gum across from the registers.
I remembered the strawberry flavored Bubblicious all too well, for I could already taste what I smelled. I picked up a stick and sniffed it. Ah, curse you TMJ jaw pain for not letting me have the sweet chewy stuff! (And curses for not letting me eat celery with chocolate peanut butter any given day.)
Later, at another Five Below, as I came across the candy section again, I remembered a literary essay I wrote for a college class I took in my second year at Towson University (fourth year of college). My very first essay, entitled “Burst”, was my attempt to show how gum was a unique thing to love, and also to hate. To quote Mr. Willy Wonka: “Chewing gum is really gross. Chewing gum I hate the most.”
But didn’t scientists do a study where people who chew gum are actually better and smarter at doing things academically than people who don’t? I should revise that essay again!
Now before I get sidetracked again, I’ve come here yet again after a long absence to announce that I’m soon going into dental surgery, partially because of my jaw condition.
Having jaw pain from TMJ disease is one problem. I was slightly devastated when my doctor told me I wasn’t allowed to chew gum or sing karaoke until I get a mouth guard. I gave up bubblegum completely, but I refused to give up singing.
But what scares me more is the fact that there’s four impacted third molars invading, making my front teeth prettier. There used to be a gap in my front teeth, but I can live without it now. But the migraines, they’re murder.
Last Saturday morning, I was in a She-Hulk level of pain. Since last Wednesday, I caught a bad case of the sniffles just like almost everyone at WTC. My whole head was congested; I couldn’t see straight without my eyes watering with tears, thanks to a stomach and sinus induced headache on my right side. Without nasal spray, Advil for colds, Tylenol for the headaches, steam, and plenty of hot tea with honey, I wouldn’t be writing this post or writing at all. Plus, it’s taken me so long to write a new post because the first part of my work readiness program was coming to a close and I needed the rest to prepare myself for the next part of the plan.
However, I was glad that my dental surgery for my wisdom teeth was the following Friday, especially after my visit to the doctor. People have told me that once you have your wisdom teeth out, you feel no more pain. But I can’t say the same for my TMJ. I’m still scared of what the surgery will do to me.
I have an entire week off starting on the 19th. My surgery is tomorrow, October 16. I will be asleep for the whole procedure, and there will be certain things I won’t be able to eat for a while, plus I have to give up karaoke night this coming Saturday. One of my instructors at WTC told me, “Enjoy lots of milkshakes! Of course, you’ll have to eat them with a spoon.” (Yeah, because I can’t drink through a straw after surgery so I don’t injure my gums.)
Now that my last day of work readiness has come to a close for the week, and the weekend is approaching fast, I’m hoping that my fasting doesn’t slow me down for a good walk, even when I can’t eat breakfast before I go in for the oral surgeon. But I wasn’t the only one in my program getting the same dental procedure, for a few students called out sick for a week for the exact same thing. From my understanding, it’s 40 minutes long, a very quick process as long as a Kelly Clarkson album, there will be lots of medicine and gauze pads, and your diet will be restricted to yogurt, pudding, applesauce, cranberry sauce, and maybe ice cream, depending on how you respond to the procedure. No hot soups until maybe a day or two after it’s over.
I guess I’d better make good on having one last Banzai Burger at Red Robin before 11 p.m., since I won’t be able to eat it after tomorrow morning.
I also hope my nose functions properly as I’m sleeping. I do not want to cough, sneeze, or be fully awake during the procedure. Anesthesia or nitrous oxide, please!
Either way, once the four third molars are “no more”, I want to wake up, watching a fun Doctor Who episode and my dad’s new copy of Young Sherlock Holmes, wishing Baymax were here to scan me and make sure my recovery is quick and painless.
Until next time, I will write again soon in two weeks. After all, it’s my mother’s birthday next Saturday and the Saturday after that is Halloween. There’s a good deal of excitement this month, needless to say.
So why didn’t I go contra dancing with some new friends for last night’s out trip? Ugh. “Coulda woulda shoulda” gets you nowhere.
-The Lady in the Blue Box