April 17, 2013


I have a nasty habit of catching falls with my face.

My face was first introduced to the floor when I was six. They've been besties ever since.

I was dicking around, swinging from the arm of our couch and rocking chair when I slipped and slammed my mouth into the floor. A couple buckets of blood later, my parents rushed me to the emergency room where the doctors slapped me into a straight jacket (apparently I was "too wiggly" while they were trying to get their hands all up in my grill. GO FIGURE) and informed us that the nerve in my front tooth had died, causing the tooth to turn a disturbing shade of gray. They assured us that this would be temporary and only affect my baby teeth. THEY WERE WRONG. Once those little suckers fell out, the adult teeth came in an equally disturbing yellowish color. VERY attractive.

The rocking chair crash was only the beginning of a long history of dental emergencies including (but not limited to), the time I was on a see-saw with my neighbor and the little bitch jumped off while I was on the upswing...causing me to crash to the ground and bash my poor, already damaged, gray front teeth into the handlebar. I've also fallen out of a school bus, tumbled down a couple hills, tripped running UP the DOWN escalator and slipped jumping rope...not once did it occur to me that I should probably extend my arms to soften the blow...instead of eating dirt. Literally.

I could have my own freaking montage on America's Funniest Home Videos.

As a result, I had some seriously jacked up teeth. I'm talking, pallet expander, six years of braces, multiple extractions, root canals, and a stray molar growing out of the roof of my mouth jacked up. If I hadn't followed the recommendations of my dentists, orthodontists and oral surgeons, I would probably look like Sloth from The Goonies right now:

"Heyyyy youuuuu guyyyyys"

(ALSO. I would have been the sexiest cave woman back in the day...when teeth of unusual colors, growing out of unexpected locations were all the rage. I was born in the wrong era.)

Anyway, when I was younger, trips to the dentist were easy. I was a total champ. During procedures that some would consider torture, I played it cool, not even breaking a sweat. Fast forward to 2013 and I'm singing a completely different tune. I had an appointment to have one of my wisdom teeth removed yesterday and by the way my anxiety was revved up (I almost "nervous crapped" my pants on the way there), you would think that I was signed up to have my arm amputated with a rusty saw.

I called my dentist to see what she could do for me to "take the edge off"  and she filled me in on a glorious solution to my problem. Nitrous Oxide. The way she described it sounded magical. "Inhale a couple deep breaths of the laughing gas and BAM...it's like you're drunk." I was sold. Drunk in the middle of the day? Just from breathing? Sign me up. The best part? It could be turned off once the procedure was finished. Being able to "turn off the drunk" would have come in handy on my twenty-first birthday while I was curled up in my bathtub with pillows and blankets crying because I "didn't want to be drunk anymore."

Armed with this knowledge, I waltzed in the dentist office ready to go! Wisdom tooth? Gimme the juice and get that bitch out of my face! Unfortunately, my hopes of being hammered in the middle of a workday were short lived. When I arrived, the dentist broke it to me that another patient would be utilizing the Nitrous Oxide since they worked on a "first come, first served" basis...I'd have to go through the procedure totally sober. Totally fucked up, right?

The procedure only took about fifteen minutes...but it was a LONG fifteen minutes of me deep throating my dentist's arm all the way up to her elbow while she reached in my mouth and assaulted my mandibular third molar. As if the mouth rape wasn't enough to throw my anxiety over the edge, throwing out words like "oozing" and "dry sockets" during the post-op discussion really did the trick. I was soaked in sweat and shaking like an abused chihuahua.

Once we left, I was THIS CLOSE to going over to the grocery store and buying 5 cans of whipped cream and getting some Nitrous Oxide on my own through a whippit binge...but decided to embrace the Vicodin prescription instead.

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