On Wednesday afternoon I went to the dentist. I'd spent the whole day with a piece of my tooth in my purse, nervously checking over and over to make sure it was still there. I watched as the dentist pulled out his tools, the worst part of a dentist visit. I looked over and noticed a syringe.
"Could you tell me about the process?" I asked nervously.
"Well, first we take an impression of your tooth. Then we'll numb the area and drill it down and put it a temporary crown."
"Last time I had a crown I wasn't numbed," I said.
He then gave me the option of drilling without the numbing, and if I felt uncomfortable --
"We'll get that in there and keep going," he said jovially.
The first two impressions were too much for me. All that putty in my mouth! I felt like I couldn't breathe and nervously tapped my fingers on my legs as drool fell all over my leather shirt.
Then the drilling began and it was painless. I closed my eyes and tried to zone out.
"We're going to go deeper," he said, selecting a larger drill bit.
It was then, that I felt it. It's like an electricity radiating from my gums to my feet. Embarrassingly, I had him administer the numbing agent. My mouth gushed with blood.
"I'm sorry I'm such a baby," I said. The dentist gives me a high five.
"You went 95% of the way without it."
That night the numbness wore off and a roaring pain began in my jaws. I took a pain medicine and went to bed early feeling less like a champ and more like an idiot who was too cavalier.
I've been trying very hard to write about Thursday and Friday. My thoughts and feelings, as they have been these past few months, were hard to grasp. The weather both days in New York was idyllic. Sunny, 70-something-degrees but my stomach was in knots. I was invited to a work event Friday afternoon, and I was nervous. It went OK. After the event my boss told me I didn't have to return to the office, so I went on a walk and sat for a moment in Union Square enjoying the sun. Everyone was out in shorts and planning trips to beer gardens.
On Saturday it was another beautiful day. I had a birthday party during to attend that afternoon. Alistair and I took a long walk and cooked an easy dinner together before settling down to watch a movie. I told Alistair: "I've been good about caring less about what people think of me these days." But then I wonder: how should one behave in the world when you stop caring? I'm growing weary of something, perhaps myself? Or perhaps of fixing things, or having things to fix even after climbing past hurdles.
But if you told me you were "weary of fixing things" that, I'd tell you that you were weary of life in general.