A drive to the city for a periodontal cleaning also means a milligram of Xanax. City driving plus sitting back, or lying back as someone hovers over me, causes a flashback in body memory. My mind, soul or spirit, will not allow the most violent memory to surface. Yet it lies there inside ready to strike and the dental chair brings it so close to the surface. This terror gets harder to bear as the years’ progress.
When actual work is done, more now as my teeth grow old with me, I need more Xanax than a horse. My nervous system is shot, goes through the roof to another galaxy. I need to be driven as I’m too drugged to drive. I am grateful for all who help, the driver, the assistant, the dentist.
As I sat in the chair, the dental assistant, an older, experienced woman, asks, “How are you doing?”
I bend over and sob. They both got right to work. Thankfully that load of Xanax causes a memory lapse. The next thing I remember is slobbering all over the dentist telling him how wonderful he is, and the receptionists too. Ok, not slobbering but radiating relief.
And in this process I’ve had to ask for help, a good exercise for one who tends not to ask things of others.