Today I decided to start a gratitude journal. The lady on the Oprah show said to start with the little things. So I thought about it and decided to be grateful for the fact that I did not have horrendous gas pains today. For two days now, I have endured gas pains that felt a lot like dying and today they finally dissipated. My story starts two days ago at work during lunch. The yogurt I brought to eat did not sound appealing so I thought I might try the spicy orange Chinese chicken that the cooks were serving in the school cafeteria. As it turns out this was a bad choice.
A little after 3:00 in the afternoon I was beset by sudden and severe gas pains that actually had me doubled over in pain and slowly losing the will to live. This was bad enough by itself, but to make matters worse I was due at the dentist’s office in one hour to have a tooth pulled, something I had never had done before except for wisdom teeth and I remembered that experience was not at all pleasant. I was really nervous about it and now I had the worst gas pains of my life just to make it more interesting. I began to pray to the Gods of human bowels for a discharge of wind so my colon would not explode and I would not die….they did not answer. Then I had an epiphany… “I bet if I took one of those left over muscle relaxers the doctor gave me for the back spasms I had last fall it would probably relax my abdominal muscles too and let the buildup out …no more pain and it would take the edge off my nerves at the same time….brilliant!” I waited until 3:45 and swallowed one down. It turned out that taking a muscle relaxer before going to sit in the dentist’s chair when you have really bad gas was not as good an idea as I had originally thought.
I drove to the dentist’s office without incident becoming a little more relaxed, but still kind of anxiety stricken. However, once I arrived the muscle relaxer started to kick in and as I sat there awaiting my fate I noticed how the sunlight came in the window and made all these interesting shapes on the carpet and how pretty all the plants were and it was just like being in a forest, so peaceful and serene. I was having a really good time just sitting there and at one point was singing out loud to the piped in dentist office music. I was really getting into my own version of Moon River when the nurse came to fetch me. I stood up and floated down the hall behind the nurse, my muscles were definitely relaxing, the pill was working. Things were looking good.
Once in the chair I was chattier than usual and feeling kind of trippy. I continued on with my witty repartee and bad dentist jokes until I felt the buildup of pressure in my colon screaming to get out then I sorta wished I was dead. There was no way out now I was already in the chair with the bib on and getting my first shot of Novocaine. I tried to hold it in, but there was no tension left in my body, I was just too relaxed and by now I really didn’t care…out it came. It seemed really long and loud, but that could have just been me having an out of body experience. I remember making some comment about him poking me with needles and letting the air out of me like a balloon and if he wasn’t careful I might fly around the room backwards until all the air was gone. After that sunk in, I just kind of slinked down into the chair and pretended to be invisible. My tooth came out really easy and it didn’t hurt at all. I floated back down the hall and gave the girl at the desk my debit card, signed some paper, I have no idea what it was, I could have agreed to exchange a kidney for dental services I didn’t know, but then again I didn’t really care. I flitted toward the door making some comment about gastrointestinal disturbances, letting one rip and that they should probably check the chair for damage. Then I stopped, twirled around, looked the dentist dead in the eye and said, “So long and thanks for all the fish.” Now that’s gratitude for you.