Thursday, November 29, 2007

Under the Drill! My natural frequency.

Wednesday my voice was still very week, this made teaching Wed. School hard. But it was a good class. We went over the second section on Baptism and the first part of the Office of the Keys as well as a continuing in-depth study of our worship service, it's biblical sources, catechetical application, and value to the life of the believer.

Wed. morning I had a hospital call in TR for a member (Chris) who has been sick for quite a while. She developed pneumonia, went through the regimen of antibiotics and had to be hospitalized because she got worse after she was done with the antibiotics. Her husband (Alan) has come down with shingles. They are both in their early to mid 40s. Their two kids are doing fine. Please keep Chris, Alan and their family in your prayers.

Thursday morning was D-Day (D for Dentist). Clara needed to have a tooth pulled. I needed to have a cavity drilled and filled.

Clara was excited. I was first. And when the dentist or I teased Clara about her extraction she pouted with a twinkle in her eye.

Clara: "How long will it hurt?"

Me: "10 to 12 days."

Dentist: "No, that's 10 to 12 minutes."

Me: "Oh-beh, yeah-beh, witbeth a-bell thibs libdocabne a cabn't tebell thebeh dibeferbrebence."

Yes, I took this picture. I am a bit of a masochist. It's my theory that everyone has a "natural frequency" which sets them on edge. For some people it's the sound of fingernails across the blackboard. For my mom, it's a fork scraping against the plate. For others it might be the squeaking of teeth against Styrofoam cups. And others might be nauseated by their finger-nail vibrating against the zipper of their jacket. For me, it's the dentist's drill. If waterboarding could fix my cavity I'd rather do that then go under the dentist's drill. What does the Geneva Convention have to say about dentistry?

He had to drill a lot. I had a sealant put on a decade ago. That was supposed to prevent cavities. Wonder of wonders, those nasty little bacteria had infiltrated under my sealant, popped it off and made a nice little colony in one of my molars. I'm sure, if evolution were true, that the bacteria would have excavated a wonderful little city with Corinthian columns and complex architecture. Perhaps they would have developed their own version of the Internet. But the dentist was merciless in his eradication of their civilization. I'm also sure that some environmentalist whack-o will some day petition that such colonies be preserved (as long as they are in someone else's mouth and not their own--Did you ever notice that the most vocal environmentalists are rich kids or adults who don't have to live off the work of their own hands?)

I mentioned my anxiety about the drill to the dentist. He tried to humor me. He's a really good guy. "This drill bit is often called the whiner." I wanted to whine. "Some call this drill bit the jack-hammer." Despite the lidocaine I can feel the heat of the drill in my root nerve. Is it my imagination or is that a small spiral of smoke rising from my mouth.

I had to set a good example for Clara. She was sitting right there in the corner of the room. I prayed. I breathed deeply. I tried to be calm.

Finally, the dentist had completed his genocidal eradication of the bacterial civilization. He had destroyed all their art and architecture and wiped every civilian-bacillus out. The dental technician had Clara come over to assist during the filling. Clara kept the suction going while the tech filled, scraped, and washed.

And I was done.

Clara hadn't noticed my anxiety. Whew. Then it was Clara's turn for her extraction. She got NOx (a popular recreational drug in the early 1900s and also used today as an enhancer to race car fuel). I chose not to have it because in my previous experience all I got was to laugh while I hurt and was bothered. In the end, I hoped to "take it like a man." I am such a wimp.

Clara was so much better than I was. I didn't take any photos of the dentist slowly rotating her tooth with the extraction pliers. She put on a good show with the lidocain and laughed during the extraction. Finally there was the gristly snap and pop and her tooth was out.

We paid the bill. The receptionist reminds me of Annette Funicello during her Beach Blanket Bingo days.

I got Clara home before 11am so she could go with the Mary and the other kids over to visit Laura DeR's family.

I stayed home and did some work until the lidocaine wore off. I had lunch, late, and needed to rest a bit.

In the evening I had a meeting, went home and had read-aloud time and devotion with my family, came back here to the office to finish off some work.

I'm still sick, but doing much better.

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