Oh,​ Fearful Age! Or, making a big deal about a dying tooth…

"For god's sake Barry, pull yourself together!"Well.

They told me that it was all downhill after you turned 60.

So I’ve been into some heavy maintenance. Under eye cream to hide my ghastly fatigued look (which shines in a most unholy way against my Canadian pre-summer froglike skin). Wearing makeup semi-regularly. Whitening my teeth. Contemplating a manicure and pedicure.  I’ve been trying madly to exercise. I even have cultivated “guns” in my upper arms…

We won’t talk about those core muscles. I know they are there. They are just cozily tucked under a winter blanket.

But yesterday, after a delightful evening filled with popcorn and healthy salad, I noticed


not my actual tooth

a chunk had fallen off my tooth. A CHUNK!. Not a wee little piece. I peered into my mouth anxiously only to be greeted by my poor half-tooth, 3/4 shiny metal, 1/4 of remaining bit the whitened dentin. It didn’t hurt, which means, ummm, we are probably looking at an ex-tooth.


Not my actual teeth. Or face. Or hair. Whatever.



I’ve been expecting this. My childhood dentist was given to excessive tooth-filling and I am basically like JAWS with all the fillings in my head. But I am terribly attached to the little frames. Once when I was young (25 or so), I bashed an old-timey phone into my front tooth and killed it. I was in shock for almost a month at having a DEAD tooth in my head, though thankfully it is still there, root canal and all.

Then, when I’d just had to leave work for disability, and had zero money, my Jaguar-driving dentist told me I needed THREE caps. Or, he said, we could just PULL THE TEETH OUT. I, of course, couldn’t afford caps, let alone THREE of them.  I burst into tears and ran into the arms of a friend, weeping profusely, only to realize he had indeed lost many of his teeth. (oops) Amazingly, he is still a friend, odd in that before I stopped myself, I’d ranted on about how losing teeth was so terrible and would make me look degraded, etc.


My feat. Not my actual face.


Sagittarian mouth. Cracked teeth and all. Moves of its own accord. Fortunately, my friends know this and are not quick to condemn. Bless them.

Yep, I’ve got several chronic conditions and such, but losing my teeth is the last straw.  I thought being reading-glasses dependent was the last straw. Before that, other horrid things happened to my body and I drew those lines in the sand. It’s just such a pity the tide keeps coming up and washing away those lines, placing the seaweed further and further up the shore…

My tongue is playing with the cavern in my tooth, despite my telling it not to. I’m afraid of undoing the other little jewels of amalgam holding the threads together, leading to A. no tooth at all! and B. probably mercury poisoning from the amount of it going down my throat…(Kidding of course – any mercury has by now leached out and poisoned me). In the back of my mind, I review the Domino theory used in the Vietnam War planning. No No No!

I have a lovely dentist now, thank heavens. He’s seeing me this afternoon and I know  hope like crazy he can find me a way to save the poor thing.

popeye-i-yam-what-i-yamIt’s a bit silly, given that the docs chopped off both of my knees to put titanium ones in a few years ago. That’s a lot of body mass to lose. But no one can see the gap there. I’m shuddering at the thought of having a hole to spit through, like Popeye. Or drool through, as I age more…

Floss people, floss. I think the thing about turning 60 is that all your bad habits start to creep up on you and demand retribution. I do wish I’d cultivated some more interesting bad habits – that would at least make the changes exciting instead of depressing!

Off to write some bad habits into my characters. It’s not fair they don’t get to degrade with their author. Perhaps they can become my “Picture of Dorian Grey”…




1 thought on “Oh,​ Fearful Age! Or, making a big deal about a dying tooth…

  1. shewrite63

    Thanks… I don’t know why I chose to read this the morning before a dental appointment. My Hygienist persistently reminds me to floss – especially at night. I want to keep my own teeth for as long as possible too.

    If you have amalgam fillings, that could be contributing to MS symptoms. Happened to a family member who had heath problems, doctors thinking he had MS so he chose to have the fillings systematically removed and replaced. The symptoms went away.


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