Friday, February 24, 2017

Have a Hug. You're Worth It.

It feels like Monday. It's been a long week. Already. Last week I hurt my upper extremity, from the tips of my fingers to my neck. It was a calamity of unscheduled appointments, x-rays, and insurance. I had posted Ashley's Lemon Leek Mushroom Galette on that day, because I find comfort in food and the recipe is delicious.
I still don't have everything sorted out with my arm, and that's ok for now. I have my brace, and I have mighty medicine for the pain.
My husband, Kevin, and I took it very slow and easy this last weekend. We had an extraordinary dinner with my brother and sister-in-law, whom we hadn't seen since since before Thanksgiving, at a cozy renovated house turned restaurant. The chef had come from another fine dining restaurant in town, and now owns his own. I love to see when people achieve their dreams. Somehow, it just makes the whole experience better. We always over-stay when we go out. We have so much to catch up on when we finally see each other. The ambiance, the company, the  food, the drink, and always the politics contribute to the makings of our comfort level which enables us to dig in and stay a while. Mind you, we always tip very well. We aren't those people that don't understand that each table is money, and that the more people that can be served at that table, the more money flows. We don't take advantage.
The rest of the weekend was spent on the couch watching a marathon of Netflix's Hell on Wheels. We joke about Netflix and chill and have created our own Netflix and eat. I jokingly say that Kevin and I don't fit in anywhere but with each other. We can crank out a series like no other. We love that we don't have to watch commercials. We don't have to wait until next week for resolution of the episode before. We are professionals. We stock up with popcorn and licorice and make something easy and simple for dinner. Our brains escape the past week by entertaining ourselves with someone else's challenges for a while. Hour after hour. This won't happen in the summer, but when the weather isn't welcoming, what else can one do? Besides, I was on a regular dose of mighty medicine to get my pain under control. The couch is where I belonged.
Our minds had been thoroughly numbed from episode after episode of binge-watching, and it was getting later in the day on Sunday when I felt a piece of popcorn stuck between my two front teeth. I threaded a piece of floss through those teeth and twisted it around that space, trying to find it. When I pulled that floss out, my tooth came with it. I was stunned. Kevin insisted it was a crown. It came out whole. I truly couldn't remember having a crown on my front tooth. I would remember something like that, right?
I threw myself a huge pity party. My arm hurt, I'm missing a tooth now, and I'm falling apart. Why does it have to pour when it rains? Why do these things always have to happen at the worst possible time? Why can't I just live without seeing some type of doctor, dentist, or therapist every month? I was on a roll. Poor me. I should be a princess. Why wasn't I born a princess? I wouldn't worry about anything then. People hit the lotto all the time. Why not me? I swear I would be charitable and be responsible. Oh yes, I was bargaining with God himself. I actually cried.
You know what? I've said it before. It's ok to feel like a victim. Cry, be done, and move on. Wallowing in self-pity is destructive. As I now sit here in the waiting room writing this and waiting for a dentist I've never met, who squeezed me in as soon as possible, I am listening to the people around me. The receptionist is cheerful, and I could tell she really cares. She's calling people by name as they're walking in the front door. She's telling me not to worry about the money end of it until we figure out what's going on and what our options are. I'm so embarrassed by my missing front tooth that I won't smile. I hide my mouth behind my paperwork when I talk to her. She doesn't call me silly. She validates how embarrassing it can be. Remember, I was a nurse in the ER. I have seen many things worse than a missing front tooth. Of course, those people weren't usually conscious, so I have to myself a little leeway here.
The rest of the staff was just as pleasant. Nothing to be embarrassed about here. I'm a real person, not just a mouth. We had real conversations about the Air Force Academy, the beautiful state we live in, friends we have in common, insurances, my forgotten arm brace, and my teeth. It was a perfectly pleasant experience. They were able to temporarily glue my tooth back in. I feel a little foolish for having the hissy fit I had on Sunday. My world did not end. In fact, I met nice people. I didn't feel like an anomaly.
I'm still trying to schedule the tests and appointments for my arm. I have more dental appointments scheduled, and I don't feel as if my life is a huge disaster anymore. Some may think I am high maintenance, but I'm really not. I just get tired and need a little love and support. There is something to be said for the power of a hug, somebody to tell you that it will be ok, and that you're worth it. Oh, remember me stating that Kevin and I are the unusual ones? Remember Kevin saying it was a crown that had popped out? The dentist also thought it was a crown judging by the way it had popped out in one piece and left a "post" at my gum. When he took a closer look, he realized that is really was my actual tooth. He said that he had never seen anything like it.

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