After the “Tooth Fairy” called to squeeze me into a cancelled appointment on Tuesday morning, I started to mentally prepare myself for my second visit. My mind was trying to play tricks on me, scaring me right back into that old fear that had prevented me from going on a regular basis, but I wasn’t going to have it.My first visit, less than a week ago went as smooth as it could have gone, but I knew that today with another extraction to look forward to, it was a procedure that might require surgically cutting my gums. It was a fear inducing thought for sure, but somehow I managed to tuck it away somewhere deep into my mind where it was residing without surfacing until everything was said and done. Well almost done, but not quiet.
I prepared myself a serving of oatmeal on the stove, the proper way which I didn’t always follow before. I recalled somebody I once knew scolding me jokingly for microwaving all the nutrients out of it by not properly cooking it on the stove. Somehow the theory stuck with me and I adhered to my new stove top method. I was no longer going to feel guilty by taking the microwave shortcut. Not that it was all that much quicker anyways and I smiled remembering how many times my oatmeal actually bubbled over the edges of my bowl, leaving behind a mess to clean up. I realized that I never actually saved any time this way, considering all the cleanup that went into it. I cut an apple into my healthy delicious meal while letting it bind together. It felt as if I was preparing my last supper, or breakfast in my case as it would be difficult to eat later after the extraction. Might as well feed myself something healthy, full of nutrition.
Elvia my dentists assistant casually told me during my first visit about her love for cabbage patch dolls. She stated that she had always wanted one but her parents were poor and she never got her wish. It was just small talk but a few days later a cabbage patch doll crossed my path in the most strangest of ways as if it was miraculously just placed in front of me to test my reaction. And yes it was Elvia that I was thinking of as I saw the doll and I just had to have it for her.
Once I arrived at the dentist I saw Elvia and handed her a little gift bag that included a little note and her very own cabbage patch rainforest doll which resembled a butterfly. As a spirit animal, butterflies are often associated with transformation and change. A symbol of resurrection, butterflies represent endurance, change, hope and life. I found it to be fitting since Elvia helped transform my fear of going to the dentist and helped me change to live a healthier life. To resurrect myself and evolve into a more beautiful version of myself with a brighter smile. Thank you Elvia.
What followed was a reaction I could have not predicted as it was merely a token of appreciation that I had handed her and not something so far out of the ordinary for me. I just wanted to do this for her and I didn’t do it for one moment because I felt that I had to. Elvia’s eyes teared up once she saw what it was and she was genuinely touched by my gesture. “Oh my god I will cherish this forever, this is the kindest gift somebody has ever given me” Elvia stumbled under tears as we hugged. Time stood still for a moment as everything else was disappearing and I’m forever grateful that I could present Elvia with something so minor and minute, but something she felt so happy about. Needless to say it moved me beyond words and reminded me of my true calling and what I was aspiring towards. To make a difference and help people in any way that I can. And it was in that very moment when I was blessed to experience Elvia’s Joy that my own craving was born to experience many more moments like this. This was the second time this week that I got to experience this feeling of sheer bliss through the joy of others. Just the day before I extended a job offer to a woman who had just interviewed with me and she was so happy that her entire face lit up as she thanked me, tearfully and asked if she could give me a big hug. Another hug that invoked the same feeling, a gratifying moment, being able to make a difference. I know that my future, in which ever way it might unfold itself, will have something to do with reliving this feeling over and over again. It will know the deepest sense of satisfaction through the happiness of others.
After signing the consent to extract #3, a tooth that had broken off while biting down hard onto an unopened popcorn kernel, my tooth fairy, my kind, beautiful angelic dentist sat next to me once again as I was stretched out on the lounger. She asked me about my other tooth from last week and if I was ok with just regular ibuprofen. I told her that I forgot to take anything, ate pizza that very night and she laughed and called me tough a few times again. Tough as nails and a high tolerance to pain indeed. “We got big plans for you today, are you mentally prepared for it” she asked me and it was then that the gum cutting thought appeared once more before I dismissed it again. I knew there was a possibility but I didn’t want to think about it. I was finally here to face whatever was to come and I was ready. Warrior mode in full effect. She told me that she likes to prepare people for the worst and that it would be a bonus if things turn out to be much easier. The tooth was in the upper, right back, solidly settled deep inside my gums with three strong roots. Great. I knew it would not be as easy as the wobbly tooth from last week, but let’s just get it on already, I thought as we were about to start. Thanks to novocaine again, there was not the slightest pain throughout the procedure, but there was more pressure and a wrestling match going on to get the tooth out which seemingly decided to come out root by root instead of in one solid piece. In the end everything came out beautifully as my “Tooth Fairy” mentioned and I count myself blessed and lucky for lucky #3 to be mostly cooperative as I know that it could have gone way, way different.
I took my regular dose of ibuprofen while I was still at the dentist office in preparation for when the novocaine would wear off. In comparison to last week where I felt nothing, I did feel it wear off this time and what remained was a dull constant, I can’t even call it pain, but a rather annoying discomfort reminding me that I just had a tooth pulled. No swelling of any kind (lucky) but later during the night the dull pain even woke me up at some point. The discomfort continued into the next day, probably until mid afternoon until I finally won the battle over the pain banishing it out of sight and feel without any further pain meds.
I am thankful and beyond grateful for the out of this world care that I have received from my tooth fairy and her amazing staff. In just two visits (I was going to say short visits, but they have been actually pretty long visits) her team has managed to ban my year long fear by making me feel comfortable in ways I could have not imagined. I’m no longer afraid of going to the dentist and actually look forward to seeing a few kind friends who have made a difference in my life in such a big way. Thank you from the bottom of my heart.