Saturday, March 17, 2012

That One Time I Had Surgery and Almost Died

On Monday, February 6, I had an oral surgery. That is part of one of the many reasons that I haven't written a whole bunch. The other is that I'm busy. The other other reason is that I forget sometimes until someone yells at me, and then I have to apologize and go write a post in their honor. Anywho and twinkle stars, I had oral surgery. It was a bit of a surprise. I went in to the dentist with an "emergency toothache" appointment, and went out with the knowledge that I needed to find a specialist who may or may not be able to save my tooth.

It turns out that I had a large abscess under one of my back teeth, and the infection was deteriorating the tooth root as well the the jaw bone around it. Not good. So they put me on antibiotics to help me while I found someone who specializes in root canal treatments. WHO DOES THAT?!

So we found a specialist, went in for a consultation- he looked at some x-rays and pronounced the sentence:

I almost died. I don't do well with needles, sutures, death, dogs, hyenas, dentists, or killer mole rats. I just don't. Andy was swell, though, and took over from there. Once he set up the appointment for the surgery ("SOONER rather than later would be ideal," said the not-about-to-be-operated-upon-specialist-in-horror-scenarios), Andy took me back home and we prepared a list of meals that I could eat without teeth. It mostly involved yogurt and soup. Lots of soup. There was a sale on soup, actually, so we REALLY stocked up. Like, we have a whole shelf with nothing but soup upon it.

The Day of Doom arrived. I grabbed Francis (my teddy bear who comforts me when I am unwell) and marched resolutely out the door to meet my sure destruction. Andy came too. We got to the dentist's and went in. They took us back and let Andy sit in the corner. He held on to my leg the entire time. I shook it a little every now and then to assure him that I hadn't passed out from an overdose of panic, laughing gas, and sheer adrenaline. I closed my eyes the whole time so I wouldn't see any sharp implements passing over my head and into my mouth, pointy side down. "That was quick and good" according to the specialist, and they stitched me up, and gave Andy a little baggy with a how-to guide of taking care of delusional wives in their post-op states, and a mouth wash, a SUPER soft toothbrush, some chapstick, and an ice pack I was to keep on for 15 minutes, off for 15 minutes for the rest of the day.

I was so numb that I had that bizarre fwumple sensation halfway down my throat, and up to my inner nostril. I was very swollen and didn't know what was happening. When we got home, I called my Mama to tell her that "I HAD THURGERY!" and that I was all done with it.

Andy looked at the list of TO-DO TO CARE FOR YOUR LOONY PATIENT, and noticed the food requirements:
  1. Soft foods
  2. No chewing
  3. No hot foods
No "hot foods" meant no soup. Guess what? Soup was just about all we had. Oh well, Andy sighed. He had to run to class, and I was needing sleep. He put everything that I would need on the bed next to me, made sure I was wrapped up in my fuzzy pink blanket, and got me a raspberry yogurt to eat when I could. He also got me a paper towel so I could clean my numb self up after eating gloppy stuff while being unable to open my mouth more than a centimeter or so.

And then Andy left. I was ALONE.

Thanks to the numbing stuff, lingering effects of laughing gas, and the pain meds I was instructed to take, I was a loopy loony oodle flubble. Seriously. I was.

I sat around for a long time. I napped. I hungered. I struggled to reach forth my tired hand and lift mine yogurt to mine lips, because I felt like Thor.

Granted, it was only at a very specific moment in the movie, but still. I felt like Thor when he was hungry. And, unfortunately, yogurt isn't the most sustaining of foods, and I was still hungry. I also felt like a baby because I had to wipe my face after every bite to get all that stuff that didn't make it into my (for once) tiny mouth. Sheesh.

I called my mother, who is in Tennessee, and not at my house, and doesn't know what I have in my kitchen, and can't get it for me anyway, and asked her what I could eat, because I was so hungry. She asked what I had. I didn't know. I lurched out of bed and hobbled over to the fridge looking like I was Quasimodo's ugly step-sister.

I know because I saw myself in the mirror as I passed by. I also noticed that the area around the surgical area was really red and swollen. It looked like there was some pretty bad bruising coming up. Darn. All I needed when I went back to school the next day. To look like a cross between a lunatic troll and a madwoman ogre. With a giant bruise on my face. The only plus side is that the whole left side of my neck and face were COMPLETELY numb. It actually didn't wear off until the middle of the night.

I told Mama what was in my fridge. She told me what to eat. So I ate that. The kids all took turns on the phone talking at me since I couldn't really speak all that well. I felt contented, having feasted on loads of applesauce, and went to sleep ensconced in my beautiful pink blanket. It's fuzzy, soft, warm, and a lovely shade of pink, just like everything else I own.

When I woke up a while later, I grabbed my phone to check the time. I was hoping that Andy would be home soon. My ice pack had melted, and I had been using frozen peas in a plastic grocery sack on my face. I had basically slept with it as my pillow. As I was getting up, I felt a pulling on my lower cheek (near the surgical area) from the ice pack. I pulled the ice pack away from my face. I looked at it. There was something on that ice pack. Something that looked a whole lot like it had been a part of my face... Skin. My skin was on the ice pack. My FACE skin.

I grabbed my phone again. My phone has a large shiny and reflective touch screen, and it can be used as a small, somewhat deceiving mirror in a pinch. I looked into it to check out my hypothesis and how bad the damage was. Oh fwumple crackers and a bowl of fresh potato soupMy face was FALLING OFF!

I naturally freaked, made a strange delirious noise of horror, kind of like one that Frankenstein would make in a scary black and white film adaptation, and *clutched* my face. THE HORROR! I didn't know what to do. Andy wouldn't be home for a while yet, and I was afraid to call him. I didn't want to move my jaw for fear that it would loosen more of the skin. I didn't even want to take my hand away because that might pull MORE of my face off of my face!

Just as I was about to burst into hysterical tears of terror and madness, I noticed something. The skin that was attached to the ice pack had tiny dark flecks in it. Looking closer, I noticed that they looked a lot like...

...raspberry seeds.

I pulled my hand away from my face. It was true. I had had a major and nearly fatal heart attack because a streak of Yoplait 99% fat free Raspberry Yogurt fell on my face.

Andy came home to me sticking my face into the Cone of Shame, only the Cone was my little yogurt cup. He laughed and asked. I looked pathetic and didn't answer.


  1. Just think though, if your face did fall off, then Francis and Andy would have fixed it somehow...Because engineers are smart and awesome like that right? :)

  2. You and Aunt Debbie need to coauthor a book on medical mishaps and adventures. And I can't wait until the day you write your labor and delivery stories! Even if they are far in the future!