Tuesday, 10 June 2014

Tears in Welsh


Tap. Tap. Tap.
'Does that hurt?'
'Uh-uh.'
Tap. Tap. Tap.
'Does that hurt?'
'!!**!!'

The sea was most days so noisy. I closed my eyes and tried to imagine it, what else it might sound like. But it sounded just like the sea, rough and tumbling and bubbling. Behind me lay a protective bank of pebbles that stretched the length of the beach. Blue stones. Purple stones. Cream stones. Some with lines, some mottled with spots. Piles and piles of muted colours. We collected the shells she and I, tiny things of mauve and palest green. On the days of rain, it was hard distinguishing between sea and sky. Both heavy. Both grey. But one choppy with temper; surfers falling away from their boards, breaking the illusion of continuity between water and air.

'F**k,' I said holding the hot water bottle to my cheek. 'F**k. F**k. F**k. Then the outcry. Then the tears. Everything felt like agony. Hot. Cold. The bumps along the road on our way to the emergency appointment. The dentist prodded and poked, his instruments, precise and clinical, laid out like a silver army on the trolley. 'You have a deep pocket,' he said, 'full of bacteria.' 'Uh-uh,' I said with his finger stuffed inside my cheek. It might have to come out was his prognosis, gave me a prescription for antibiotics and painkillers, sent me on my way, 'see your dentist as soon as you get home.'

It still hurt. A lot. Stabbing and intense, like boulders cracking thick ice. Wednesday night I couldn't sleep, was sat up-right in bed rocking backwards and forwards like a child, my arms wrapped around my chest, my jaw hung slack like the open cavity of a basking shark. By 3 am I'd had enough. I pulled the covers aside, climbed down the stairs. I watched a lame movie on the ipad, rocking without thought in the leather chair. Dawn appeared, the first I'd seen in many, many years; the sun like a fresh orange over the hills, the tide ebbing, quiet behind the window, shy and sleepy. Covering the nearby field was a sheen of dew kisses like a blanket of candy floss. I wondered how satisfying it would be to run barefoot in that grass, feel the cool against my ankles. I held my hand against my cheek, watched gulls flying in pairs, heard the crows echoing inside the chimney in the cottage next door. Anything to distract me. How could tooth ache be so all consuming? Reduce me to this? Crawling the walls. And at this time in the morning FFsakes?

Hooray for Younger Dad who looked after her; built sand castles during the day, told her stories before bed. I hardly saw her during our week long stay on the Pembrokeshire coast. Too tired, in bed, not joining in. So I attempted sleep in the spare twin in her room, anything to feel close to her, hear her movement and breath. Each day she appeared with more colour in her cheeks. Each day she gave me one of her gentle hugs.

We left two days early. 'Poor Mummy has a really hurty tooth,' she said. 

And now I need a holiday.


52 comments:

  1. oh i hate toothache, it is the absolute worst. i have always said that i would rather give birth than have tooth ache ( not sure if you would agree) . hope you got it all sorted hun xx

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    1. It was horrid, and I think worse than labour pains so I would totally agree with you. Will be off to the dentists very soon. X

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  2. Oh gosh, you poor poor thing. How are you now? Everything okay? For sure, you're owed another holiday now. Get those brochures out!

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    1. Pain has subsided now but I don't want to ever repeat that again.... it was that painful I couldn't do anything. Fortunately we are going to the Latitude Festival in July and then on holiday again in August.

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  3. How awful - poor you! there's something about extreme pain that reduces us to our animal selves I think - like it takes out the capacity for higher function and we retreat to being little curled up creatures. I'm really impressed you've managed to write so beautifully about your surroundings! Hope you're better now. xx

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    1. And that's very well described and exactly how it felt, reduced to a wounded animal, and I did curl up, a lot! And insitu, I did manage to notice some of the beauty. Better now but off to the dentists very soon. X

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  4. Oh my goodness, you have my every sympathy - there really is nothing worse than toothache. And to get it whilst on holiday too! Poor you :( Hope you get it sorted out soon x x

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    1. It was pretty awful and to experience it on holiday felt like the worst luck. It's looking like root canal work. X

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  5. Oh I had an abcess just before Christmas, absolutely excruciating so you have my utmost sympathy- no pain like it, I think it was worse than childbirth!

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    1. And poor you too.... that must have been awful. And I agree, there's no pain like it, and I think it is worse than childbirth as the pain is in your head!

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  6. Argh a sore tooth is terrible! I had to have one of mine taken out in the end. Not an experience I'd wish to repeat. I feel for you!

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    1. It was really horrid, and not one I'd want to repeat either - off to the dentists very soon to have the work done, and that's going to cost a small fortune!

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  7. Oh S... How awful.... Real toothache is all consuming, nasty nasty pain. I hope it gets sorted, and you can have another break soon? Beautiful writing as always xx

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    1. It was so unpleasant. I don't know why it's called an 'ache', felt more like labour pains to me. Hoping to get it sorted very soon, at least it didn't happen over Britmums! X

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  8. You poor thing. Reminds me of some bad earaches I've had - you can think of nothing else. Hope it is all resolved soon..

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    1. It was particularly unpleasant, and the pain went right into my ear as well which made it ten times worse. At least the antibiotics worked but will have to face the dentist again very soon.

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  9. Oh you poor thing, what a nightmare! Why does it always happen on holiday? It sounds so beautiful where you were, by the sea, what a shame it was ruined by your naughty tooth. Hope it's all sorted soon. x

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    1. It was ghastly. Least it didn't happen over Britmums. Definitely the worst holiday I've ever had and certainly one that won't be forgotten. I don't ever want to repeat that again. X

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  10. oh I'm so sorry, you poor thing :( It is the most unimaginable pain, all-consuming as you say - impossible to enjoy anything. Such a shame it spoilt your holiday, know how much you were looking forward to it. Hope you're getting treatment now? xxx

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    1. It was really horrible. I just wanted someone to yank the thing out there and then. Will be seeing a dentist very soon hopefully - looking at root canal work. Not looking forward to that! X

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  11. Toothache is bloody awful! So sorry it spoilt your holiday! sending a big hug and hope it's feeling better!

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    1. It wasn't very pleasant at all!, and my holiday was a write-off - I need another one now! Feeling better but off to the dentists *gulp*.

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  12. Tooth ache is simply the worst thing ever. As a very nervous patient at the dentist when I needed a tooth removed a couple of years back it lead to a mini-breakdown afterwards. Honestly, out teeth is something we take for granted until something goes wrong - then the pain, oh man. I really feel for you - and such rotten timing too :( x

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    1. Tell me about it..... it was so painful. I never want to repeat that again. And now I have to go back to the dentists to have the work done which I'm not looking forward to at all. How was having your tooth removed? That is another option for me. Horrid it happened on holiday! X

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  13. Poor you, agreed tooth ache is impossibly horrid! What bad timing too. Hope you feel much better soon xx

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    1. Well at the very least it didn't happen at Britmums but the timing sucked. Tooth is better but the dentist beckons. X

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  14. Oh no what a rubbish thing to happen on your holiday! Beautifully written as always though and I hope that it is better now

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    1. It was probably the worst holiday I've ever had. Thank you, it is better now but need to see the dentist.

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  15. The only other book that made me feel the air, the grass under my feet was The Heart of Darkness by Joseph Conrad. I felt the African heat pressing down on me there as tangibly as I feel your "sheen of dew kisses like a blanket of candy floss... to run barefoot in that grass, feel the cool against my ankles". Reading you is opening up my every sense..and that's what's going to make me return, time after time...x

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    1. Thank you very very much... I feel very humbled. I've read heart of darkness, it was a long time ago now but I do remember it being very vivid; amazing how they made a film three hours long out of it! Thank you. X

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  16. Toothache can be so hideously painful - you have my sympathy. I remember when I had an impacted wisdom tooth. Oh the pain! I would have happily let the dentist pull it out without any pain relief if it had meant the ongoing throb ended. Just awful. What terrible timing too. No wonder you feel like you need a holiday now. Hugs x

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    1. It was hideous, really hideous. I've never experienced pain quite like it, and like you I wanted it yanking out right there and then! And the timing couldn't have been better :o).... I'd so been looking forward to the holiday too. And I really do need another holiday now. X

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  17. I hope you are feeling better now, toothache really is the worst thing ever.

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    1. Better now thank goodness! It really is the worst.

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  18. Oh no lovely toothache is such a horrible pain and typical while you were away. I hope you're feeling better now or at least have an appointment. Clove oil on a cotton bud is good otherwise! Beautifully written post as always x

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    1. Thank you very much. The pain was a mare, and that's putting it mildly! Trying to get a dentists appointment sorted out now - yippeee! X

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  19. Ouch, I hope you feel better soon. There's nothing as horrid as a toothache...

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    1. It was horrid, am feeling better though.

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  20. Oh, I'm so sorry to hear your holidays were ruined.
    Those teeth problems always seem to pick the worst time, it happened to me too last year.
    I wish you a speedy recovery :)

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    1. Thank you very much, I am better but need to see a dentist quick smart. The pain was something else! :o)

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  21. How awful for you - and to miss out on your holiday too. But what a beautifully written post x

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    1. Thank you very much but it made for a miserable holiday - least it didn't hit at Britmums! X

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  22. Just catching up with your toothy tale. You have described the all-consuming throbbing pain so very well. I have a tooth like that - I eventually had root canal work on it and tooth has been saved however I need to go back as it now has a hole in it on the gum line. Have an appointment the Tuesday after BritMums. Just hoping it doesn't cause me any trouble before then.

    Now, where are you going for your next holiday to make up for this one?

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    1. Thank you very much. I have never felt pain like it in my life, not even childbirth I don't think. I am going to have to have root canal work done on mine too, a part of me just wants it yanking out to prevent any further complications. Take pain killers to Britmums just in case - looking forward to seeing you there. And we are going to the South of France in August!

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  23. I knew you were suffering and am sorry to see you came home early. Will PM you for an update xx

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    1. It was really horrid but toothy is better now after a round of antibiotics. It still needs to get seen to though. X

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  24. Ooh now toothache is just awful!! Hope you are feeling a little better! I once dashed to the dentist fearing I needed about two teeth removed, turns out it was a bad case of clenching my jaw and that pain was bad enough. I looked a bit of an idiot hehe xx

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    1. It is really, really horrible. Feeling better now after medication but it does need to get seen to soon. I clench my jaw too and I need to wear a night guard.... X

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  25. Oh ouch - that sounds horribly horribly sore - I hope it's feeling better by now, and what a shame for your holiday

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    1. It was very uncomfortable - I seriously considered yanking it myself. Couldn't have been worse timing for the holiday!

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