Sunday, May 15, 2016

Pain and let's talk about it

In early April I had gum surgery.  They harvest skin from the roof of the mouth and fashion that into gums.  There was some pain but they give you nice painkillers which do the job for the couple of days that you need them.  After that's it's just annoyance while waiting for the gum graft to take and the stitches to dissolve.  There is some ultra-antibacterial mouth rinse with a hyperactive mint flavor which I liked but after the surgery you can't rinse the usual way as you could dislodge things.  You have to shake your head back and forth and I am not kidding!  Thirty seconds of nuclear mint!  Again, I liked it.

I have uncooperative brows and as I get older I've sprung the odd hair or two in wrong places.  It is what it is.  I'd been going to a Brow Bar at one of the Ulta stores or one of the Macy's stores but that isn't cheap.  It's pretty quick for the lip but the brows required weird measurements but, sigh, I did it for years.  Then one day it occurred to me that I was over the waxing.  The people I liked best for waxes kept leaving the location where I'd found them; or the person who did a good job was just too talkative and gave an uncomfortable amount of information (this from someone who likes a lot of information); or the person wasn't interested in doing a good job.  I decided I'd let them get too thin and I could tame the savage wrong odds on my own.

The Sunday after gum grafting I woke up and thought "I am going to the threading place at Harlem-Irving Plaza" which is a semi-suburban mall.  HIP, as the signs out front say, is semi-suburban in that it's right across the street from Chicago, literally.  I'd heard about the threading place from a Clinique saleslady of my age about six years ago; she liked threading because she found it to be fast and clean. She went to different suburban threading places but said this was her favorite.

There is no recession at HIP.  There are no parking spots to be had at HIP because people like to come there to spend their money.  I finally found a spot on the roof and considered myself lucky even when I had to cross a large expanse of open roof in a steady rain.

HIP is a place that is multi-cultural.  All races and ethnicities are commingling, shopping, eating, getting massages in the massage kiosk (they put a towel over your head so no one can prove it was you), getting their nails done in a nails-only place.  I asked someone in a store if she knew where the threading place was.  "I don't have any other information," I said, but the person I asked told me precisely where to go.

It's a place where you go in and sign your name to a list.  I didn't know this.  They didn't tell me.  They just told me to have a seat and I was next.  There were other people and I wouldn't have minded waiting but after five minutes, a young person came and got me.  I told the young lady what I wanted and she went at it without discussion.  I've had my brows tweezed or waxed for decades so I'm used to that pain.  The other area, between the nose and the upper lip, the area of savage wrong odds, has experienced hot wax being ripped off so I thought I was ready.

I don't like being a wimpy girl.  I had a lady's medical procedure that was known to cause women to scream out during the procedure, I didn't let out a peep.  At the end my doctor said, "Good for you.  You didn't cry out and you didn't kick me in the head."  I had an ear procedure that made me sob. And, of course, I'd just had gum surgery.  Nothing compares to this. I can't even describe it.  Rolling horror as the sustained threading moves across the area like Sherman leading the Union Army from Atlanta to the sea.  And one leg twitches involuntarily.  I had a hard time not shrieking and telling her to just stop.  Apparently there were many savage wrong odds and they didn't want to go quietly.  One last final leg twitch.  She came at my brows with scissors and then it was over!!

It was half the price of waxing and took half the time.  It hurt thrice as much but it was over faster.  I paid and tipped lavishly.  She was very pleased.

I was not going to be anywhere by HIP today and decided to try a place in Skokie.  This person was very sweet and very thorough and the pain was worse and my leg really twitched.  I tried to hold it together but I could not.  The price was less than at HIP and I tipped more lavishly.  I am again tidy.

I am having gum surgery in the middle of June, hand surgery this Wednesday, and a colonoscopy on Monday.  After today's adventure in hair removal, I know my leg won't be twitching during those.  Of course with those they use very good drugs to make nerves sleep while the surgery/procedure takes place.  I wish I had some of that for four weeks from now when I revisit one of the threading places and one of two seemingly pleasant young women makes my right leg kick out involuntarily.  I'm just glad no one I know is there to see it.

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