Monday, November 24, 2008

Tooth-some Wisdom

I wrote this in May 2002. I came across it earlier today and decided to share.

My jaw still hurts from having my wisdom teeth out. I have a quiet frustrated outrage over the fact that they call them wisdom teeth and then pull them out. Leah wrote a thing one time about how they should be called vision teeth. I think it would only be fair if they called them optional or transient teeth so you know from the beginning that you shouldn't get too chummy with them. I was always looking forward to mine coming in. I saw it as a step in my maturity, a rite of passage. But instead my teeth did a thing called "impacting" which could sound good or bad depending on the context. Turns out dentists unanimously agree it is bad. And bad things must be "removed before they can cause more damage"
My wisdom-my potential wisdom was ... damaging me? Couldn't some agreement be reached between me and my malcontent teeth?
Nope, they gotta go-and why did you wait so long in the first place?
Because I want to be wise...
So now I am four teeth lighter and I can open my jaw about an inch and a half, two inches. My back molars feel looser, my eye teeth feel tighter and I am wondering if it was the right decision. But everyone- EVERYONE- complies to the holy word of the men in white coats and I often doubt myself and chalk these feelings up to stubborn innocence of the facts. Still I can' shake the feeling that I gave away something important. So here I sit, struggling through my sandwich, mulling over the significance of four bones at the back of one's mouth and the possibility that everyone is ignoring the importance of them. That, just like when you grow up you realize you lost something important when you stepped away from childhood, it could be that those of us who rid ourselves of these chompers later cannot put our finger on the source of a feeling of unease or loss or distress. Because no one acknowledges this step in the right manner. It is seen as an unpleasant "procedure" that is common place and unimportant.
Well, I choose to give it importance. I choose outrage at the disregard everyone has for my lost symbol of wisdom. I choose to consciously relocate the symbolic physical location of my wisdom. I will have wisdom eyes or wisdom toes or wisdom hairs or wisdom vertebrae! I haven't picked the new seat yet. Perhaps it will choose me.

What are your wisdom tooth related thoughts and stories?

1 comment:

~Jo~ said...

Oh dear, I can sympathise with you. I got two window teeth pulled this year and need the last two out as soon as I can afford too. ACK! Getting all four out at once sure is the best thing. I am not looking forward to my 3rd 'procedure'.

I thought getting them pulled meant I was wise enough to go through life without them! ;) Ditch the sandwich, try soup.