Oral Surgery is Awesome!!

Okay, maybe not completely awesome. Eh hem... ^.^

After oral surgery last Wednesday, I'm back. It's been five days, today, and I feel almost completely better. There's still a bit of pain in my jaw and around the surgical sites, but otherwise I feel okay. I'm taking only Advil now, I'm completely off of the Lortab, though I did hurt pretty bad last night and considered taking one. For whatever reason, I hurt most at night and when I first wake up in the morning.

The morning of the surgery I woke up feeling pretty good. I even slept a bit the night before. Whatever nerves I would normally have were completely absent. I didn't feel anything. It may as well have been any other day. Trust me, I'm highly suspicious of this fact. Normally, I would have started worrying before the consultation and then worked myself into a crazy frenzy until the morning of the surgery. This time, I felt completely calm. Not at all like me... I liked it. By the time I had started to worry that I wasn't worried, I had taken the Vistaril and it took the edge off. It actually made me kind of sleepy and chattery, so I talked Matt's ear off on the way.

When I got there, they got a surgical bonnet on me, put in the IV (ouch!) and I was out like a light. The last thing I remember after she drugged me was thinking, "I don't feel at all sleepy." It took less than 20 seconds for me to be completely out. The surgery only took an hour. Matt had been skeptical about the fact that it would take only one hour. He told me later that he was called back into the room to sit with me at 9:58 a.m. (my surgery was at 9:00 a.m.). It took almost exactly one hour. That's amazing accuracy.

I remember thinking, while they were prepping me, that my shoes were going to fall off. That's how sort of loopy and calm I was, I was thinking about my flip-flops. When I woke up, Matt was sitting next to me, I was covered with a soft blanket, and my feet were bare. Somewhere amid the constant instructions that I should stay awake, I remember hearing the nurse tell Matt that he should get the car and she would get my shoes. They were all so nice.

((Matt just told me that I was in and out for a half an hour. He said that I kept waking up and asking the same questions, over and over. Like, "where're my teeth?" and "what time is it?" Apparently, I only asked him, not the dentist or her staff, so I only looked like a dork my husband. I can handle that.))

They wrapped an ice pack around my head and sent me home about fifteen minutes after I woke up. The second I was in the car I was back asleep. I don't remember the drive home, nor coming in the house, I just remember waking up on the sofa a few hours later. Feeling swollen and yucky, but surprisingly well for having just had surgery. Matt says that, all in all, I did well with the whole healing thing and that I was a good patient. He's an amazing husband and took extremely good care of me.

Then, Thursday, my surgeon, Dr. Lois, called to find out if I was okay. Not her office, mind you. She called me. That made me feel so good. Like she actually cares whether or not her patients are okay. She's a great doctor.

Of course, I was on the sofa, sucking up the healing rest for so long that I started to feel horrible from laying on the sofa. There came a point when I couldn't be certain whether I felt bad because my head hurt from having had dental surgery, or if my head hurt because I was laying there doing nothing for so long. I managed to sit up and deal with a bit of discomfort while my head cleared. I think, honestly, it was a little bit of both.

I have another dentist appointment for this Wednesday. It's a follow-up, which I'm sure will go great. I took my antibiotics religiously and I feel okay, so I'm not terribly concerned. But I'll tell you, there are a few awesome things about this surgery that sets it apart from any of the other surgical procedures I've had in my life: a) it's the first time I've ever had anesthesia (of any kind) and not gotten really sick, 2) Chewbi faithfully cuddled and snuggled me, but he got quite upset that I wouldn't let him kiss my mouth, and c) the nerves thing was awesome, I'm going for zen every time!

Oh, and I lost five pounds. Bonus!! ;)

Bye Bye Wisdom Teeth...

I'm going to the oral surgeon in the morning to have my wisdom teeth out. Thankfully, there are only two and they're erupted... mostly. I'm also having a molar with a bad root canal, in the back on top, pulled. It has a fistula, which means that infection is leaking out of my gums. These three teeth are my biggest dental issue so getting them taken care of is making me feel awesome.

So far, I'm not really nervous, but I feel like I might be in the morning. We'll see. She gave me Vistaril to help take the edge off and to dry my mouth out. I'll also be knocked out, so it's a bit like going to sleep and waking up with gaping holes. I feel okay about that, even though I know that it's going to mean several days of laying on the sofa moaning.

Obviously, I won't be around for a while. No bloggy, no Facebook, no Twitter. Just a whole lot of sleep, ice cream, and protein shakes.

Wish me luck!!

Childfree Is Not a Synonym for Wealthy

I recently set up two Google Alerts: childfree & childless. Which means that I receive emails, for each alert, directing me to recent articles. It's brilliant. I can't imagine why I didn't do this sooner. Unfortunately, it's also left a bad taste in my mouth. More than half of the articles aggregated are about how the childfree & childless are a selfish lot who're destroying the world. This time it's because we're not producing future taxpayers to take care of the elderly. Um, okay. But that's not what's bothering me. That's old hat in every sense. People have been shouting from the rooftops that we're selfish and abnormal for a long time. One article even went so far as to say that we "lack an essential humanity."[1. http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/article-1185128/Why-bosses-right-distrust-women-dont-want-children--VERY-outspoken-mother-ex-boss.html]

What's bothering me is that so many anti-childfree articles suggest that we're all a bunch of world traveling, fancy cuisine eating, high rise living, party people who have nothing better to do than to go to "hot yoga" and take "shopping trips to New York."[2. http://fullcomment.nationalpost.com/2012/09/19/joe-oconnor-selfishness-behind-growing-trend-for-couples-to-not-have-children/] The ones that cap their articles with pictures of couples drinking wine and enjoying life. And the pro-childfree articles, the ones that defend us, sometimes aren't really defending us. Many of these are making the problem worse by interviewing those kind of childfree people. The ones who say things like "The benefits of not having children are in the driveway, in our closet and stamped on our passports" (refer to footnote #1). It's ridiculous. We're not all a bunch of wealthy, snooty people who're buying Louboutins and jetting off to Paris for lunch.

And let's get this out of the way, because inevitably, someone will say it. Yes, those kind of childfree people do exist. The ones who have more money than they can spend because they're not spending it on children. The ones that take expensive vacations three or four times a year and stay in childfree resorts. The ones who waste their money on six bedroom houses they can't possibly need. Okay, I get that. So does everyone else.

Now come back down to earth, where we're real people that struggle, too. I know just as many childfree people who struggle to make ends meet as I do parents who're constantly taking their children on vacations and buying them fancy toys. For many of us, the idea that we can afford more only works in fantasy. In realty we're affected by the bad economy, our retirements aren't somehow impervious to taking a huge hit just because we don't have kids, we struggle to afford medical insurance and pay our bills, to pay back our student loans, to take vacations. We're not all running off to Jamaica to lay on a beach and write our memoirs. Some of us suffer from the same problems people with children do. And I, for one, am grateful that I don't have children who're suffering because I can't afford to feed them.

But here's the thing. The argument in these articles, from both sides, has a built in fallacy. They say that some people don't have children because they feel like they can't afford them, then turn around in the same breath and say people without children are all swimming in more money than we know what to do with. It can't be both ways. It cant be that we're regular people who look at our budgets and can't see where children will fit, but we can somehow afford a personal trainer, martinis in upscale clubs every night, and a BMW. Those sentiments are completely incompatible. If we don't have them because we can't afford them, then we're not buying Coach handbags, either. The saving grace here is that most childfree people don't chose to forgo children because of money. Most of us chose to remain childfree for much more personal reasons. It's a point most of these articles miss when they're slamming us for our selfish, wealthy ways.

Even still, it's problematic that these articles paint us in a light that suggests that we're snobs, snubbing the basic human process of having offspring while giggling over our champagne at the poor, poor saps who fell for procreation. We're not snubbing anything, many of us just understand that unwanted children are a terrible thing. Every child deserves to be loved 100%, not resented for taking something away. But that's an argument we've all heard, repeatedly, so I don't need to elaborate. Nor do I need to point out that the world is much less kind to the childfree. We don't get tax breaks, we pay taxes for schools and services we don't use,  and when we need help, we don't qualify for some of the basic human services available to struggling people with kids. It's as though, to the government, we don't exist at all. Save for tax time, of course. And we have to invest in our retirements, we won't have children to use as a safety net when we're old. We also don't consume as much as people with children. And so on.

But all these articles seem to care about is that we can afford more. Even when we can't. Yes, my husband and I have a few small luxuries. I get my nails done when I can afford it, but while I'm there I sit and listen to women chatter about their children all around me. Sometimes they even bring their terrible two year old to the salon. We go out to eat regularly, where we're almost inevitably seated behind or beside a couple with small children. We take in a movie now and then, where the kids who're sitting behind us relentlessly kick the back of our chairs for two hours while their parents ignore them. Our best friends eat out regularly and they have three kids. My point here is that while there are people who suffer, all around us there are families who aren't. So, to paint us as some sort of selfish entity who can afford more than those who have sacrificed such luxuries for their children is unfair.

Ultimately, children are just one factor in a complex net of factors. They're expensive, I get that. I recently read something that says it costs average parents with average children about $1.1 million dollars over 18 years to raise one child. Yikes! Okay. But remember, being childfree doesn't make us any more capable of making money. It doesn't make us any less susceptible to expensive illnesses that we struggle to afford treatment for. It doesn't make us any less human or any less open to the same exact factors that affect other humans. We're not all wealthy or even well off just because we don't have children and childfree people who say we all are, just because they happen to be, are much more a part of the problem than they are the solution.

My Someday Soon...

When I was a little girl, rather than dreaming about marrying a prince and living in a fairytale castle, I dremt of being a successful career woman with a high rise loft apartment. While I'm not 100% there yet, I've run into a problem. You see, it would seem that the man I've chosen to share my life with doesn't like lofts. How can it be possible that anyone doesn't like lofts? The exposed brick, the concrete floors, the open piping. It's a dream, but one he doesn't seem to be having. And rest assured, this is a pretty big deal. A huge deal, in fact, because I've always seen myself in a loft as my forever space.

He would rather live in a townhouse or a single family home. He would even prefer a plain old apartment. To his credit, they are much more cost effective than loft living. When asked why, it would seem that every single thing that makes me love them, turns him off. He doesn't like the exposed brick, hates the polished concrete floors, detests the open pipe work. Who is this man?!

He says it wouldn't be ideal for our dogs, but a lot of places have nearby (or attached) dog parks. I've looked into it. But the dogs aren't really the problem. Rather, his issue seems to be that they generally don't have walls. He wants a place with walls. For the life of me I can't figure that one out. There's just two of us. Me and him. Two dogs and a cat. Why on earth would he need walls?

Then, not ten minutes ago, he tells me that he's changed his mind. He still doesn't like them but if/when we move he'll be happy wherever I'm happy. It's a trap. I'm sure of it. It's one of those marital tests that make you wonder what the heck you're supposed to do. Do I take him at his word? Do I chose a place I know he doesn't, at first, like? Or do I take his feelings into consideration without his permission? Because his giving in on this makes me think putting the ball in my court will also make me responsible for his misery, should he really, actually hate it.

In this case,  when the time eventually comes, I chose what will make me happy. At least for the time being, because it's what he says he wants and I'm going to respect him enough to take him at his word. Besides, I'm sure that if he looked at them, stood in one, saw how happy it makes me, that he'd find a way to like it, too. That's what I tell myself, anyway.

There is one shining light though. He seems to like my choice of furniture. That's something. You see, I've always imagined filling my dream loft with beautiful, retro furniture. Sleek lines that scream 1950s. Something exactly like this...


It's the Nixon Leather Sofa in Brompton Brown and I love it. It's perfect in every sense and one day, mark my words, it will be mine. One day when I can afford to pay $2,800 for a sofa. And the loveseat isn't much less. Oh, and there's a chair that matches. And the same company makes desks and tables. My loft will be brilliant. It will be perfect. I'll fill it with retro furniture and lamps, area rugs, Big Chill modern-retro appliances. Matt and I will be happy there, living the life I always dreamed, and he'll love it too because I'll be happy. Someday.

Until then, I had better get on doing the things to make this fantasy a reality. Whatever that may be. Pictures forthcoming. Someday.
Images via:

Wildflowers


This is my grandmother's high school graduation picture. Her name was Wilma Faye Troutman and she was 18 years old. I've always loved this picture and, after she passed away, I somehow managed to get home with the original while my mom has a copy (I feel a little bit bad about that). It's even still in the original paper frame, which is in pretty good shape considering it's 61 years old.


I couldn't help but think of her last Wednesday morning, while on my way home from Granbury after seeing the oral surgeon. Highway 377 between Stephenville and Granbury is a small two lane road that passes through several small towns between here and there. The highway is mostly rural, with wildflowers growing up along the shoulder on each side. It's a lovely, idyllic drive.

I thought of her because when she was alive she enjoyed long drives from the panhandle to central Texas, just to see the wildflowers. Though the bluebonnets are all gone now because the weather is getting too warm, the countryside is still alive with pink and white primrose, vibrant red Indian paintbrush, and a pretty, abundant yellow flower called calliopsis. She loved them so much that seeing them always brings her to mind, but particularly so when things are still and quiet, and when I'm alone.

Though she passed away in August 2010, and I didn't get enough chances to see her when she was alive, I miss her. She was a beautiful person and she was always so gracious to me, her first grandchild. I imagine she would be delighted by the colors and variety that blanket the rural green highways and find that I'm extra delighted by them, now, too. Just one more small way of remembering her.

Adios, Spring 2013!

The spring semester is thankfully, blessedly, mercifully over! Today is the grading deadline, but I got all of my grades into the system on Friday. I also packed up my little office and labeled the boxes (our building is under construction because it's getting a facelift/spacelift and because the building has asbestos). The only thing I had left for today was to update Digital Measures and answer a few emails from students. That's it! I'm done and it's been a good semester, only busy. But then, show me a semester that's not busy. I mean, seriously and the end of the semester is always the hardest since there's so much to do and so little time to get it all done. Somehow, though, I always manage to pull through, at which point I'm stuck looking back wondering how the heck I pulled through! Happens every time.

This semester, I've also had school again, which has made things even crazier. One of my classes was only 8 weeks, which was nice, and one of them I managed to get done with fairly early, but my finance class was an absolute beast! Since the class was comprised of three modules, there were three finals in one weekend--accounting, finance, and economics. We also had to take the finance module midterm the weekend before that. I honestly don't think I've ever been so happy to be done with a class before. And maybe I've said that in the past, but I hadn't taken this class yet. Seriously!

Fortunately, when I emailed my professor about my grade--he said we could and, also, I'm super paranoid--he said that he's recording a B for my grade. Amen! I passed. I've seriously never been happy with a B before. If you remember, or maybe didn't know, after taking the midterm for accounting I was pretty certain I'd failed this sucker. I wish I'd realized how much more there really was to do after that midterm, I might not have worried over it so much. Maybe I should have spent more time looking at the syllabus? Yeah, that's a no brainier.

So I made two A's and a B. I'm fine with that. That's a 3.67 for this semester, so my 3.82 GPA won't take much of a hit. Matt only had the two classes this semester, and he'll probably also make a B in finance, so his first semester GPA will be fine, too! I'm so happy for him. Grad school is really something he wants for himself and he really needed to do well this semester to make a go of it. He's done that, so all's well and we both go on!

We're taking 9 hours in the summer and six in the fall. Or, I am, at least. I don't think Matt's decided yet. He may do it the other way around because the summer is always short on time and he works full time. Either way, after the fall semester, I'll only have two classes to go which means I'll graduate in May 2014. By the time I'm done, this will have been the quickest grad school experience of my life. It's going to take Matt a little bit longer to finish, but not too much. Maybe a semester or two, which is fine. It'll depend on when classes are offered and how many he takes per semester. I had six hours of grad credit coming into the program, which is why I'm slightly ahead of him.

Anyhow, I'm super thankful that the summer is here and that means no work for me. I go back in the fall to 3 courses (about 75 students). That's one course more than I've had this semester so it'll be slightly more challenging, particularly since one of those classes is English 1301 and two are 1302. I'll have two classes for which to prep materials and I'm actually looking forward to it!

As of now, I don't have any summer plans, except to focus on my classwork and to, maybe, do Camp NaNoWriMo (NaNo in July!). I don't know. I've never had a whole lot of luck with the NaNoWriMo thing, so I'm not sure I want to spend my summer doing that. We'll see. Now, I have to go wake Matt and see if he can be enticed to take me out for dinner. For now, adios!

Thank You For Believing In Me. . .

I just realized that it's teacher appreciation week. There's something ironic about it being finals week here, when all of the instructors and professors and buried alive in grading. Seems more like teacher torture week, if you ask me. And, while it's tempting to take this moment to soapbox about the plight of adjuncts or some of the ugly things the Texas legislature is doing to teachers, I'm not going to do that. Instead, I'm going to spend some time appreciating the amazing teachers in my life because that's what it's all about, right?

So here's a little tale about two of the most important people in my life. . .

When I was a little girl, I couldn't read or write. I have a pretty severe case of dyslexia that made simple things like reading enormously difficult. I think too many people overlook the severity of dyslexia and the lifelong challenges it presents for the persons afflicted. My mother was concerned because I couldn't read or write, and when I did write, I wrote mirror images, but she wasn't completely sure what to do about it, either. She (my mom) was always my biggest advocate and the loudest voice to find me help, so after seeing some specialists I found my way into the Resource Specialist Program (RSP) at my elementary school.

If you don't know, it's a fancy way of saying special education, though I don't know if they still call it that. It's a program tailored to help children who're learning challenged. Children like me. I'd spend a good part of my day in RSP with Mr. Gray and his staff, and a few periods in the normal classroom with the other kids. This wasn't easy. Kids aren't gentle or kind, they would bully and torment the RSP kids. I dreaded going to the normal classroom, a combined first/second grade class, where I'd have to hide under the desk so that the bigger girls wouldn't beat me up.

I was in this program from the first grade through the fifth grade. Gradually I learned to read a little bit and to try to make some sense of the jumble of letters going on around me, where I couldn't seem to get them in the right order. More frustrating was the fact that I couldn't tell that they weren't in the right order to begin with and so fixing it became a maddening problem. Without Mr. Gray, my RSP teacher, I might never have overcome this. He was a nice older man who treated me with respect, even though I was a little kid, and who always believed in me. His unending patience and willingness to explain, however many times it took to get it right, is the only reason I was even able to begin to learn to read. His creativity in lessons, which were interesting and informative, and the way he approached teaching kids with learning disabilities was inspirational, even to a six year old.

He was the most profound influence in my life, apart from my parents, until the fifth grade when I was placed in a fifth/sixth grade class with Mrs. Clemens. She was an amazing teacher who took an interest in seeing me removed from RSP. She wanted me to be in the regular class full-time, not because she didn't believe in what Mr. Gray had been able to do to help me, but because she believed I had come far enough to help myself. She felt I was ready to make it on my own, said so to the facilitators and to my parents, got me retested and had me put in her class on a full-time basis. That was the year I left RSP behind. It was also the year my baby sister was born, the first year I went to 6th grade camp (when I was in 5th grade), and the year my class took a field trip to the tide pools at Dana Point.


It was the best of my formative years. I've never had a teacher I loved, or respected, more than I respected Mr. Grey and Mrs. Clements--at least not until I reached the university, some 15 years later, and met Dr. Mallory Young (go read that link while it's still teacher appreciation week). These two teachers, both elementary school teachers, still hold a special place in my heart and when each of them passed away I felt as though the world had lost something wonderful. I will never forget them, nor what they did for me during a time in my life when I couldn't do for myself, a time in my life when my brain was forming and when I was developing the basic education that would make me who I am.

If they were alive, I would thank them for what they helped me to learn. I would share with them my successes, which are in large part due to the foundation they gave me. I would never have been able to recognize a teacher, or professor, who believed in me had they not shown me what it looked like. It was in the fifth grade, with Mr. Gray's influence and Mrs. Clemens encouragement, that I was finally able to read, even if not fluently. I've come a long way from the ten year old who could hardly read, who had to think about the shape and order or every single letter she put down on the page, largely because they showed me the way.

I still have moments when I stall, when something just doesn't look or sound right, when I have to think through every letter I'm writing (or typing). I always will, but they don't define me anymore. Dyslexia doesn't define me anymore. But how I learned to over come it always will. Thank you Mr. Gray and Mrs. Clements. You truly changed my life.

Oral Surgery, the Oral Surgeon, & My General Dentist. . .

I'm having my wisdom teeth out on May 22nd at 9:00 a.m. and, rather than being nervous, I'm feeling really good about it. I saw the oral surgeon this morning, she assured me that my wisdom teeth are not, in fact, as bad as I thought they were and I made an appointment to go back to get them taken out two weeks from today. She said I have one half-impacted wisdom tooth and one that's completely erupted--both are on the bottom. She's also going to remove an upper tooth that's developed a fistula as a result of a bad root canal. So, it looks like I'm getting all of my major tooth issues fixed at once!

And after seeing the oral surgeon this morning and seeing how nice she was, and how nice her staff was, I'm going to look for a new general dentist, too. The one I've been seeing is nice, but he's overly expensive and he's always trying to talk me into expensive, unnecessary, treatments. He told me getting a bridge on my lowers to replace the tooth I had surgically removed last year was more important than getting two broken, decaying wisdom teeth out or taking care of that fistula, which is infection leaking out through my gums. Then, he told me when I did take care of the fistula that I should get my root canal re-worked which is really expensive. Oh, and he wants me to have all of my old amalgam fillings drilled out and refilled, even though they're okay right now.

When I saw the oral surgeon today,I asked her what I should do about the tooth with the fistula. Rather than trying to talk me into something painful and expensive, like a re-work or an apicoectomy, she said I should have it pulled. That's exactly what I've been wanting all along--it's also what I wanted before I got the root canal on that tooth to begin with--and all the dentists I've seen before have all but refused. She won me over right then. She said that if removing it becomes a problem I could look at getting an implant at some point, but she didn't push it or seem overly concerned about it.

Really, though, all of that unnecessary work aside, my general dentist is so expensive and he's out of network for my insurance which makes him even more expensive. It's not worth it. The oral surgeon quoted me a really good price for those extractions I'm having in a few weeks and after insurance it's going to cost me only about $315 $543 out of pocket (out of Care Credit?). When I had that tooth removed and the three fillings last year, it cost me about $1800, of which my insurance reimbursed only about $300. It's insane how much he charges. I don't know how anyone affords him. It's unbelievable.

So, when I find a new dentist, the only work I'll have left after this is to have my teeth cleaned and figure out what to do about the tooth on the top left that my current general dentist (I'm going to start calling him Dr. Moneybags) says needs a root canal. I'm just hoping he's wrong. I'm also thinking about having it yanked and going ahead with the bridge on bottom, though I don't even notice the place the tooth is missing anymore and it's not noticeable, even when I smile. You really have to be looking for it. We'll see. Then, maybe I'll have my teeth whitened. I've never done it, but I've always been a bit self-conscious about the fact that my teeth are a bit yellow (it's an enamel issue, they've always been like that). It's not completely necessary, so it's certainly not a must do.

I'll just be glad when I'm laying on the sofa moaning about my swollen face. Melanie agreed to take me, the procedure will take an hour or so, and then I'll be done. I've wasted so much anxiety and emotional distress on worrying over these teeth for the last five or so years, I don't have any more worry in me.  At this point, the 22nd can't come soon enough! Wish me luck.

On Marriage, Children, Insecurities, & the Documentary 'Sexy Baby'. . .

I'm many things, including a wife, but I'm thankfully not a mother.

When I got married the first time there hadn't been discussion about babies. There hadn't been discussion about many important issues, like money, either. But, since we were Catholic and my ex had never said that kids were something he wouldn't want, I assumed he would. He knew, though, that I had been against having children since I was a young teen. He married me anyway and it would have become an amazing, painful struggle--as were all things between us, to be honest--had we stayed together. I would have been subject to painful medical testing, drugs,and poking and prodding. He would have learned that I was infertile and we would have lived miserably ever after. He would never have been happy without children and I would have been even more of a failure than he already thought I was.

When Matt and I got married, we didn't really talk about having children either. There wasn't much discussion about where we were on babies. I knew, at that point in my life, that I might want one and that he didn't. I was still going through a "babies are the hot new accessory" phase and wanted one because a lot of people I knew had one. He was still growing up. By the time my phase has passed and I was back to my usual self, he had grown up enough to think that he might actually want one. We had switched sides on the issue, we talked about it frequently, and I expressed that--without comprise--I wasn't on the baby bandwagon. I had never really wanted one in the first place.

Then I went through a spell of fear where I worried, constantly, that I wasn't going to be enough for Matt. I worried that I would be depriving him of something he needed to be fulfilled. Because I'm not just infertile, I'm childfree by choice. I made the choice to forego the poking and prodding that comes with the attempts to medically force a body to do something that it wasn't naturally capable of doing. I tend to believe that infertility is nature's way of gently suggesting to you that children aren't something you should be doing. But that's just me and, honestly, more power to women stronger and more willing to subject themselves to near torture for the sake of a life sentence than am I.

Then, tonight, I was watching a movie on Showtime Women called Sexy Baby. It's a documentary that follows three unrelated women and the subject matter is gender politics and sexuality. I recommend it if you get the chance. It's also what brought on this sort of fit of nostalgic thoughtfulness. One of the women, a former porn star, was trying to have a baby with her husband. Though she wasn't against it, she was afraid she wouldn't be able to give him a baby and of what that would do to her marriage. The film made clear that he married her to grow a family and without babies their marriage wasn't completely stable. He said he didn't marry her just because he loved her and had she said she didn't want kids, he wouldn't have married her at all.

And I got pretty angry.

Shouldn't marriage be about love first, children and all the other obligations second? Maybe I'm idealistic on this topic. Maybe it's unrealistic of me to think that other people could stay together and be happy without children. Maybe I just hope that my husband doesn't decide, when he's 40, that kids are something he wants and that he needs to go find someone to give him kids. It could happen, right? Even though he's told me, repeatedly, that kids aren't important to him and that he would rather have me than kids any day. I take him at his word, but I worry, too, and hearing 40 year old men say they wouldn't be married to their porn star wives without babies to sweeten the deal drudges up my insecurities. If an ex-porn star isn't good enough without using her uterus to satisfy her husband's need to prove he's virile by bringing offspring into the world, then how on earth am I?

And really, why would he think he has the right to say something like that to his wife? Isn't the knowledge that the world only values her as a sex object enough of a weight on her shoulders without having to hear her own husband, who should love her unconditionally, tell her that she's the sum of just one part, her uterus? That he values her as a reproductive object? It's upsetting to me and it brings about all sorts of negative emotions for me. In addition to my insecurities about Matt running off with someone who wants to have kids, I know, too, that the world is judging me and that I shouldn't have to repeatedly explain why it doesn't matter that my "clock is ticking" and that I'm "running out of time." It's fine. The quicker my time runs out, the better. Really.

Fortunately, for this recovered porn star who seems to be trying to make something of her life outside of the porn industry, she was able to give her husband a child. Which, by the way, he has declared is the light of his life. I feel for that woman and for others like her. No woman should ever have to be valued for her ability to reproduce alone. No woman should suffer the inhumanity of being a uterus first. It's unfair and, frankly, disappointing. I got lucky with Matt, he cherishes me as a person, a luck I would never have had with my first husband. I just hope that he's right and I'm enough because babies will never be a part of our future together.

Oh, Wisdom Teeth...

I woke up last night with every nerve in my body screaming at me. From the roots of my hair to the tips of my toes, my skin was crawling, sensitive, and I hurt. What had me awake was a single throb in my broken, rotting, impacted wisdom tooth. It took me almost two hours to go back to sleep after my nerves settled down and the fear that the tooth would start throbbing again subsided.

When I got up this morning and had time to think it through, I decided it's time to get it taken care of. It and it's brother on the other side. They both need to go and soon. After getting some information from one of my former professors about who took out her wisdom tooth in January, I called and made an appointment with her oral surgeon for a consult. I go next Wednesday morning at 8:30 a.m. and rather than being nervous about it, I'm excited to finally be going.

Rewind:

Several years ago--and by several I mean like five or more--I had the worst tooth pain I have ever had in my life. The worst pain of any kind, in fact. That wisdom tooth was throbbing and I literally thought I might die. I couldn't even bring myself to leave the house I hurt so much. Eventually, it stopped and I was able to rest, though it was sore for days. Every since then, I have done everything in my power to never, ever suffer that pain again and I haven't. But, I live in constant, unyielding fear, that it will happen again and I simply cannot deal with it. It was unforgettable and something I hope never to repeat.

So, I'm sucking up my fear of dentists and going to an oral surgeon. I've never had to go to this sort of dentist before, so I'm nervous, but not nervous enough that it's going to stop me anymore. Like I said, my excitement that I'm finally (probably) doing something about it is overriding my other faculties. Frankly, that's a good indication of exactly how much I don't want to deal with this again that I'm willing to go to an oral surgeon voluntarily.

So wish me luck, because talking about it is making me nervous.

On Upgrading to iPhone 5...

Matt and I got our new iPhones today. I've been dying to have the iPhone 5 since it came out last year, but wouldn't ever let me upgrade because we didn't have an upgrade available. So, rather than paying $400 per phone, he made me wait for May to get a new one. Boo! We had the following conversation a whole bunch of times. . .
K: Plllleeeeeaaaaaasssssssssssssseeeeeeeeeee let me get a new phone?!
M: Wait for May, it's not that long.
K: Do you know how many pictures I could take between now and then?!
M: *eyeroll*

So, the first thing he did when he got his phone was to figure out how to work Siri. He convinced her to call him "Game Master" which is hilarious. Then he started taking pictures of our mutts (who aren't actually mutts). He took one look at the picture quality and gaped...
M: It auto-zooms on things that're moving and look at this picture quality!!
K: Mhmm, it's awesome!
M: Shoot, we should have updated months ago!
K: *tosses a dog on him and walks away*
M: Bwahahahahahahaha!!!!

For my part, I haven't quite decided what I'll have her call me, but Kristyn seems apt. Or maybe I'll make her call me something completely off the wall. I'll think about it while I'm deciding whether or not to strangle Matt. Now, back to playing with my new toy!