Thursday, February 26, 2009

One Tooth Less

It's unavoidable. When I go back to Indonesia, I'll have one tooth less. Well, actually, I NOW have one tooth less. It's not that big a deal, but I feel the loss anyway. Everytime my tongue runs through the hole that once was my tooth, I feel the loss. Everytime there's some food falls into that hole, I feel the loss. Everytime I brush my teeth and the brush couldn't find that one tooth, I feel the loss. Everytime I look in the mirror, I see a big black (and sometimes bloody) hole in the place of my tooth. What lesson did I take from this experience? To appreciate the small things in life. I also learned to let go. Well, I learned to let go too much, I think I have to start learning how to hold on to something precious. But that's been the way I am since... I forget when. I have trained myself so much to accept the inevitable and to let go of everything (the logic is, we came to this world with nothing and with nothing shall we leave this world, right?). But it isn't as simple as that, really. We humans have greed. We have envy and we have ambision. We have wants and we have the eros kind of love. I'm the kind of gal who cherish everything I possess, from the simplest thing like 'my' plate, 'my' chair, 'my' side, until the bigger matters like 'my' computer. If you have ever watched 'Friends', you know that Joey doesn't share food, right? If you're on a date with him you could order anything you want, as many as you want, but NEVER take anything from Joey's plate. I'm ALMOST like that. Not as bad as Joey, though. I'll share as long as it's not my favorite food. Or as long as it's not in a small portion. Or as long as I like you. Hehe.

Where was I? Oh, yeah. So I cherish every small things I possess (including my food). Therefore it's always hard for me to let go of those things, like when somebody suddenly sit on 'my' side of the sofa, for example. Only small things like that can make me felt so annoyed. That's why I had to train myself to let go. Problem is, I did overcome that possessive habit over small things (I still get annoyed, but I won't kill you for that), but I also become so easy in letting go the bigger matters. Like love. Like money. Like my pride. Like friends. Like... my tooth (okay, again, it's not that big a deal, but that tooth had been with me for 22 years, for goodness sake!).

Okay, here's the story. Friday night, I couldn't sleep for hours because I felt a little pain on my tooth. The pain wasn't too much but the level of the pain wasn't consistent so it was annoying. I was asleep for half an hour and then suddenly I was awaken by a sting of pain. It was like that the whole night. But after I woke up on Saturday it wasn't really there anymore. I only felt it when I ate. And then Saturday night came and by the God. I've never experienced such a tootache my whole life! I absolutely couldn't sleep the whole night. Luckily I happened to find the trick to lessen the pain: I drank cold water. Still that means waking up every hour to drink that water. On Sunday I worked, and I almost couldn't smile at all. Even to the guest. I count myself a very professional person, and no matter what I would always smile to the guests. But how could I smile with a mouth full of pain? I drank ice-cold water like every ten minutes (literally) and went to the bathroom every half an hour or so. It felt terrible. And I had to work for 11 hours that day, so just imagine how torturing it was!

I couldn't sleep at all that night, the pain was so excruciating I had to drink more often than when I was at work. No other option: I had to go to the dentist. I called the dentist office at 9 AM, and had to have a stupid conversation with the receptionist who couldn't speak English well and I knew she was losing her patience. Well, whatever, I got myself an appointment at 10.30. I called my boss and he dropped me to the dentist office. It was quite scary. The waiting, I mean. There I was, in a dentist waiting room (it's even scarier than the actual dentist office, for me) in some foreign country which I couldn't speak much of the language, with a terrible pain in my tooth. Oh, and the receptionist said on the phone before that I had to bring cash about 300 euro, so while I was waiting I was worried sick about the money too. It was my one month salary!

Anyway, finally my waiting was over (it was about 30 minutes but it felt like 3 hours, really). The dentist was very nice, fortunately, and though he couldn't speak much English, he tried so hard to explain the problem to me. He took an x-ray of my tooth (very convinient, as a matter of fact. In Indonesia I had to take the photo in a laboratory first and then went back to the dentist sometime later) to prove his guess. More waiting... and then he came in with the result, and gave me three choice. One, he could give me medicine and we'll see what'd happen. Two, he would open up the tooth, treat the infection (FYI, the infection happens in the deepest part of the tooth), and seal it. Three, just take the tooth off, or as he said it literally, "No tooth, no pain." (If it wasn't for the situation, I would have laughed out loud at that. It's a very funny logic - and very ironic, said by a dentist). Considering that: a) The medicine might work but if it doesn't I'd have to come back for more treatment. b) The medicine might work but when it's worn off maybe the problem will come back even more terrible. c) If I choose the treatment it will cost A LOT and who knows how many times I have to go to the dentist just to follow up the treatment. So... yes, I had to say goodbye to my tooth.

I was lucky it didn't hurt too much, but the experience was quite scary. First there were three injections of painkillers given inside of my mouth, then after it worked, the dentist pulled out tongs and... well, just imagine a nail being pulled out of a board. Twist it right and left, right and left, and pull it really hard. Ouch. Even with all the painkillers I could still feel a sting of that final pull. Geez. I really feel lucky I wasn't born fifty years ago.

Anyway, the dentist asked if I wanted to keep the tooth or not. Well I couldn't imagine as to where I would keep the tooth, so no, thank you. Then with a cotton between my teeth to stop the blood, I walked home - in the winter wind. Dammit. I went to sleep immediately with the cotton still in place, after writing a note to my roommate to tell my boss I couldn't work today. One and a half hour later, I was awaken because there were some friends visiting my roommate, and therefore it was noisy like hell. And the final annoyance of that day was that I suddenly had a sorethroat, which as I thought about it, probably was caused by all that ice-cold water I drank those two days I was in pain.

So, now I'm still adjusting myself to my one-tooth-less state, and trying to get out of this sore throat, which luckily didn't get much worse. Hehe. Oh, another thing I learned: even during my painful tootache, the only thing that could make me smile again is ANY mention of Melissa. Damn, damn, damn. How in love am I with that woman? LOL!

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