Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Overcoming Fears

Everyone is afraid of something. Fears are often rational - fear of loosing a loved one and/or child (this one hurts just to type it), fear of pain, fear of tragedy... but some are irrational. I know that I have two irrational fears. The first is swimming. I had some pretty awful childhood experiences that have left me with a fear of swimming. It isn't so much the act of swimming that freaks me out, but the fear that someone is going to drown me. Let's just say I had a couple of close calls as a child, at the hands of someone else, that are quite still quite vivid all these years later. I rationally understand that those around me aren't going to hold my head under water, but there is a disconnect somewhere, and it really freaks me out to be around people + water.

But that's not what drove me to write this post. My other fear is of the dentist. Now, I know I'm not alone on this one. There are countless people out there that are fearful of the dentist. So when I started to notice a toothache a couple of weeks ago, my deep anxieties began to kick in. It was getting so bad that I knew I had to find a dentist and make an appointment. With Jeff's help, I did just that.

A few days before the appointment, the dentist was all I could think about. But my mind kept going back to sweet brave Norah. People are always poking, prodding, injecting, waking, and in general bothering her. I thought about her twice daily trach cares, when they change the ties around her trach, clean the site with swabs, apply cream to her neck, and change the dressing. I'm sure it's no walk in the park. I thought about the trach changes that are done every two weeks. They pull the old one out (which is a tight fit), and quickly slide the new one in. It almost always bleeds. And then there is her ventilator - I can't imagine what it must feel like to do those Trilogy (home ventilator) trials. More than anything though, I especially thought about her oral aversion, and how she used to resist opening her mouth for anything... but has now really come leaps and bounds to overcome it.

So when it came time to sit in that dentist's chair, I closed my eyes, and saw my sweet Norah. I saw her playing with her oral suction. I saw her smiling. I also saw her crying through the difficulties that she endures. And I thought of how she must feel while going through them. And I thought of how brave she is. And the dentist visit was more or less... well... easy. And guess what? I have a follow-up appointment tomorrow, and will make another after that to get more work done. And I'm totally okay with it. It definitely helps that this new dentist is fantastic, but I have learned that there is always perspective to be had when it comes to life's little dramas.

Thank you, Norah. You are simply amazing.

Related Posts with Thumbnails