Thursday, October 14, 2010

Wisdom...the daughter of experience

Last February I was having some severe pain in one of my back molars.  Well, really it had been going on for about...6 months or so (not always severe, it came and went).  I hate going to the dentist (even though I have a wonderful's me...not you).  When the pain became more than I could bear, I finally saw my dentist and was immediately referred to an oral surgeon.  I instantly had flashbacks to my teenage years...


I sat quietly in the dentists' chair.  The room smelled faintly of latex and bubble gum flavored fluoride.  My lips were all stretched out and dry as I attempted to wet then with my all-too-dry tongue.  The dentist came back into the room with some xrays that had been taken earlier that day.  He strode across the room, stuck them on the light box projector thingy (I'm sure it has a name, and I sure I could google it...but it would...probably have taken me less time than writing this and turned to face me. 

"You have 4 impacted wisdom teeth."


"They are growing sideways INTO your back molars.  They have to be removed or you'll turn into a mutant and all of your parents hard-earned cash that they spent on those braces will be for naught." Or something like that.

"Thurgery?" I sudden felt as if I'd had a shot (or 4) of lidocaine.  I hadn't.

Then I blacked out. 

Ok, not really, but I'm sure that the blood drained completely from my face and I felt like I was going to black out.

I spent the next 5 years coming up with excuse after excuse for why I couldn't get my wisdom teeth out:
"I'm too busy right now!"
"I can't miss school!"
"I don't like the surgeon."

But really, deep down, I was SCARED!  Scared to death of the pain, the sounds, of not being able to breath (it's a deep-rooted fear of mine to suffocate).  So there you have it.  In my mind, the bad FAR outweighed the good and I did not see it as a "necessary" surgery. 

When I finally resolved myself to having the surgery, I went in for a consultation and the surgeon told me that he wouldn't put me under because I had never been under before and because of my weight, he wasn't going to be the first to do it!  Really?  I was outta there.

And then the time came when I was married and no longer on my parents blessed insurance.  But those 4 silly teeth didn't bother me, so I put it far from my mind...


Fast forward a decade and my molar was killing me!  I had to wait a couple of days to get in to see the surgeon. 

When he checked out my beyond-salvation molar and informed me that it would have to be removed surgically, he mentioned that my wisdom teeth were starting to rub on a couple of other molars and would eventually decay the roots and cause lots and lots of problems. 

So, as a 31 year old woman, my time had come up.  I was finally having to go under the knife. 

And I opted to be put under (having been under general anesthesia twice, before). 

My wonderful mom took some time off to come up and be my designated driver the day of surgery. 

All went well...I had an AMAZING surgeon with an awesome staff!  I'll elaborate on them another time.

My mom stayed with us for a few days and helped keep the kids (and my enormous cheeks) under control.  I had some serious swelling. 

I didn't remember how bad the first few days were...

Which brings us to why the heck I'm even telling this story.

I was tweeting with a blog mentor, and somehow accidentally attached this picture:
Steph post wisdom surgery
My phone seriously hates me!  I was mortified.  But, I have no shame, so now I'm sharing the hideousness with all of you.  Because, now that I've gotten over's kinda funny.

I don't even know who took this (with my phone)...Mom?  Chris?  Me?  Coulda been.

So, the moral of the story:  Get your wisdom teeth out when you're YOUNG!  And be careful when you're texting/tweeting...because it could be a little awkward.  I'm just sayin'.
My friend, Katie, sent this out on FB a few weeks ago and I couldn't help but think of it while I was writing this.  It is HIL.ARIOUS!

And now, some pictures of my cute kidlets...who will all be getting their wisdom teeth out when they're teenagers!




PS - Do you like my new watermark/logo?...lots more on that coming soon!


Misti said...

WOW, I love your blog. How fun! Are you a photorapher also? Super awesome photos! When are you going to be in the Vancouver, area to take my family photos??? :)
Check out our blog at

I will add yours and so I can keep up on all your fun posts! We love Family Fun magazine, too! :)

zenmasterlauren said...

Awwwwwwww! I love your photos :):):) The way you process them is so perfect! Glad the story had a happy ending. I worked in Orthodontics for almost 10 years and after all our patients (the teenage ones) get their braces off the first thing they do is go see their dentist and then they also get an xray to check and see if they have the 4 wisdom teeth and then we would do a referral to an oral surgeon for them to have them removed! It was pretty much a standard thing in the 2 different offices I worked at. All four of mine grew in straight (go figure when I had to have braces twice because my other teeth grew in so crooked!)---crazy :)

Stephanie said...

@Misti - Thank you! I would so love to come up to that area and take photos...if I could schedule several sessions at once, that would work much better for my travel schedule! I'm so glad to have your blog addy, I'll be checkin' in (maybe not as much as on FB, but you know...)

@Lauren - Awww, I love YOU! I seriously had the BEST orthodontist! He tried...I was just stubborn! hehe. I had to have braces on twice, too - no fun and glad it's done! I wish my teeth were as straight as they used to be though! ;o)

Sarah Z said...

I know the fear of dentists all too well...I haven't been since Todd & I were married (don't tell, k?)!! BTW...I have seen MUCH more swollen cheeks! I did notice your watermark before you even said anything! I like it!