Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Augh, what a frustrating couple of days...I broke down and called the dentist yesterday morning because I have a crown that's cracked and the crack is getting bigger. Then I spent all day yesterday and most of today wandering around the house wringing my sweaty hands, trying to figure out how to quell the anxiety and terror engendered by a looming dentist visit.

I seriously cannot get anything done right in this state. I went to Lowe's this morning to get paint for the bathroom and I bought a different color/shade than the one I've been planning for for months, and now I think I made a big mistake. I'm not even going to attempt to put it on the wall till the dentist trip is over, Lord knows what would happen.

You'd think getting absorbed in a task would help with the anxiety, but what happens is I start doing something and then I start thinking about sitting in that chair tipped way back and all those fingers in my mouth and the sucky thing and the buzzy brush and the drills and the huge needles and the giant pair of rusty pliers they're probably going to have to use to pry this crown off, and before you know it my hands are shaky and my eyes are teary and whatever I've been trying to do has gone way off track. It's ridiculous.

I'm not this way about the gynecologist or the eye doctor or the regular doctor. They can cram whatever they want in my girly parts or my eyeballs or jam however many needles in my arms they want. Just don' mouth!

I can't stand feeling this way about something as innocuous as the dentist. It makes me feel completely stupid and ridiculous. And yet I don't seem to be able to grab any scrap of rationality about it. Or when I do, it gets swept away on a wave of blind terror.

The dentist called in some Valium for me to take before I come in, and I'm really hoping that will help. A sledgehammer to the head would probably help more.

Oh well. Such is life. It's not the worst thing in the world, it just feels like it. I keep thinking of all the things that are way worse than a trip to the dentist, to try to give myself some badly-needed perspective. Dying in an Australian wildfire is way worse. So is being a Palestinian in Gaza. I'm lucky that I can go to the dentist and have insurance and money to pay for it, and that a couple hours in the dentist chair are probably the worst thing that will happen to me this week.

I just don't feel lucky! Hope that Valium is powerful. Think of me tomorrow at about 10:00; the hygienist will probably be in up to her wrist at that point and I'll need the good vibes. Shudder.