Wednesday, January 30, 2008

nicole and the terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day

So about that whole inner ear/dizziness thing from last weekend resoving itself? Yeah, not so much. What happened instead was that I ended up sitting in my doctor's office in tears today, clutching the side of my face and apologizing profusely for looking like such an Edvard Munch painting.

This is not like me. Normally, I take pride in the stoicism I am able to display in the face of discomfort (oh, shush, all you people who know me). But, oh the humanity! I seriously haven't been in this much pain since bearing my first child (who was nearly ten pounds and came out with his fist clenched next to his face) without any anesthesia. Oh, there was that little teensy shot of some completely worthless liquid the nurse added to my IV "just to take the edge off," since it was by then too late for me to get an epidural. (I just about took the edge off her when she said that, let me tell you.) But I pretty much birthed the boy sober, intent on the whole "natural childbirth" idea. It's a lovely thought - really, it is. Still, when the pregnancy test came back positive the next time around I called my OB and had her write "EPIDURAL REQUIRED" on the top, bottom and both sides of my chart. In capital letters, red ink and much underlining. Also, exclamation points. And someday I may tell you about my not-so-secret desire to run away with the Anesthesiologist (aka Dr. Feelgood) the day my daughter was born.

ANYway. It probably didn't help my facial/sinus/ear/jaw situation that I went ahead and kept this morning's dentist appointment, which I scheduled weeks ago. But do you know how long you have to wait to get in with a good dentist in this town? So, I had a crown done. No biggee. Just, you know, about A SOLID HOUR of having my jaws cranked open so Dr. Death could hone his drilling skills. (Actually, he was extremely gentle, but that doesn't make for nearly as interesting a story now, does it?) Since the crown was being done on the non-painful side of my face, I've spent the last couple of days figuring it would all work out fine and that I should stop being such pansy and just cowgirl up. So, that's what I did.
Problem was, the pain was so intense by the time I left the dentist's office that I actually reverted to Lamaze breathing to get through it. Seriously, it was like labor pains in my face. Fortunately, I'd called my doc first thing this morning and made an appointment to see him after the crown was done. Which brings us to the face clutching and the apologetic sobbing.

"You should never apologize for being in pain!" he exhorted me. And he was so sweet about it that it made me cry that much harder. He checked out my ear and declared that, yup, it looked ooky in there. Then he sent me on my way with prescriptions for pain-relieving ear drops, antibiotics and Vicodin. Yup, Vicodin, aka "party in a bottle." I'm pretty sure the last time I took Vicodin was about fifteen years ago after having my wisdom teeth out. I felt so good so immediately on that stuff that I decided it would be a Really Great Idea! to get on my bike and go for a long, strenuous ride. Needless to say, the next morning I looked like something the cat dragged in, ate and then threw up on the carpet.
So, here's to hoping this thing clears up before I decide to go, I don't know, shoe a couple horses or chop a cord of wood.


  1. I wonder if the sinus thing is contagious.... I had it a few weeks ago. But I did not have to see the dentist at the same time of the infection!! SOOO SORRY! I am glad that you have the RX to make you feel better...

  2. Oh man, you are killing me!!!

    With sympathetic pain And nausea!

    It's okay, this post is baby.

  3. I just realized how cruel I am to laugh at your pain. Labour pains in the mouth???? Ack!

    I hope you're feeling better. And this really was funny, y'know.

  4. M, I'm glad for the meds, too - especially those ear drops, which are so cool because they actually numb the whole eardrum.

    H,glad to be of service. Maybe I should write while in pain more often.

  5. I hope you feel better soon. Earaches suck! My daughter has had them all her life and I know how sick she gets.

    Heal quickly. Who takes care of the horses when you are under the weather?


  6. Not cruel at all Heidi. It made me feel better to know I could make y'all laugh. :-)

    Jane, the man of the house has been great about taking care of the four-leggeds. And I looked up hedgehogs in AZ - turns out they're illegal here except under very strict circumstances. That's why I'd never heard much about them, I guess. Of course, now I really want one of those little cuties. I guess the Silkie hens will have to be the only unusual, fluffy things around here...

  7. Marla4:01 PM

    Oh Nicole, I totally feel for you! But Vicodin is the best, isn't it? :) I still have my stash from a few months ago when I felt like I was locked in an underwater tunnel (both ears massively infected). I, too, cried in the doctor's office. And this was after 9 years of itchy ears (off and on), so now I finally have vinegar drops to ward off any potential fungi. But I've barely really needed them since the antibiotics, so hopefully that did the job. You should be feeling much better by now, I would guess. I hope so.