Yesterday, as Iz's tooth was pulled, a baby molar that had cracked when the tooth underneath it was more than ready to come through, she was panicky, nervous, anxious. Having the numbing gell spread inside her mouth was terrifying. Hey, the hours leading up to the spur of the moment dental visit were no picnic in the park. It was her first health emergency. Her tooth ached. I could see bruising in her gums. She clenched my hand, hard, as the dentist forcefully wiggled the halves out. And then, as she drooled and bled, I could see the nervousness still etched on her face. She couldn't feel her tongue, the side of her cheek. It was hard for her to swallow. Not being in complete control of her body was something strange and new.
She said she hoped this was the worst thing that would ever happen to her.
My heart ached.
Her life is just beginning. She has no idea what out-of-control situations are in her future. She hasn't discovered relationships yet and the pain of liking someone who doesn't like you back, being broken up with, being in different emotional places as someone else. Or of friends you've known forever growing away and not coming back. Of people you love moving far away. Getting sick. Dying.
She's only at the tip of the physical iceberg. Of adolescence. Of a body changing in unexpected and sometimes surprising or disappointing or frustrating ways. Of surging hormones. Of pimples that may not seem like a big deal to the outside world, but feel like a bulls eye in the middle of a cheek. Or forehead. Or chin.
She's had colds and fevers and earaches and I'm sure there are plenty more of those in her future. She's been in the ER once, when she was a baby, for a cut finger than healed over before we got to see the doctor. No matter how much I want to protect her, no matter how hard I try to keep her safe, she's human. I don't even want to think about what ifs (that's a horrible road for anyone to go down), but the reality is we all have stuff we go through.
At the moment I have a pain in my jaw (this is when Jack would say I always make things about me). I think it's TMJ. Much is swirling in my life right now and I can feel the tension building up on the left side. But, it could be sinus issues. I know, from my many ENT visits, that my sinuses hang very low and when they're filled up, they press down to cause pain in that area. It could be a tooth ache. I recently had a cracked molar and spent months with pain, fittings, work and now a crown. Could be bone cancer or a tumor. I try to keep those dramatic thoughts to a minimum. In yoga this morning I had trouble staying in the class as the pain stabbed and sharpened. I spent time contemplating acupuncture, massage, steam rooms, and what might work best.
I'm looking for a solution.
I'm hoping this will be the worst that things get.
You never know. Perhaps a painful jaw will be it for me. Maybe the universe laughingly sent me something that makes talking hard when communicating is what I do.
Hey, I like that rationalization. I'm sticking with that and packing the scarier stuff back into my anxiety closet.