Saturday, March 7, 2009

Is there wisdom in wisdom teeth?

I recently had supper with a friend who fells like just a few months ago life was finally perfect - she had an amazing fall wedding, found a great new apartment and both she and her husband loved their jobs. Now he is unemployed and perfection is a thing of the past. Just today we found out another friend was laid off from her government job. These stories are all too common and I know I don't have to expound on how hard these economic times are. People are not able to maintain their normal lifestyles, let alone the dual residences my partner and I have supported over the past year in order for me to pursue my acting career.

A year ago when I moved to LA I fully believed my guy would be there with me by now but we've not received a single offer on our Ohio home and with people getting fired left and right, this is the stupidest possible time for anyone to quit a good job and try to find a new one! I honestly didn't think I'd be in this position, but I have to figure out what the hell I'm doing - with the economy in mind- either find a new roommate, a new place or move back to Ohio.

My current roommate is moving in with her guy when our lease is up at the end of April. The money I had saved prior to moving is long gone and in this economy, my current apartment is no longer affordable. Perhaps I could swing it if I could negotiate a lower price and a new roommate paid a greater percentage for the bigger room. But I have no roommate prospects; moreover I can not fathom being in another year long lease without my love. I need to look into month-to-month leases. Either way I would have to find additional employment.

I am left with the million dollar LA actor question - how the hell do people do it?! It is such an expensive place to live; working enough to support yourself doesn't give you much time or flexibility to audition and take acting classes, so what's the point of being there if you're lonely, miserable and not really pursuing your passion? This is why tons of books and seminars are titled, "Don't get stuck in your day job," and why no one I've met in the work place is a very successful actor!

I have been desperate for answers; I feel like no matter what I'm going to regret my decision, but perhaps my mouth is making the choice for me...

Early last week I started experiencing extreme sensitivity in my top right molars, so I went to the dentist for a slightly overdo cleaning. At that appointment the hygienist noted my right top wisdom tooth was coming in and said, "I'm surprised you don't feel that poking you." Thanks a lot bitch - it's as if she gave it permission to start driving my nuts! Wednesday I went back to have a cavity filled on the left top molar, after which they tested the sensitivity on the right with a freaking ice cube. Lucky for everyone and everything within flailing distance of my arms, the ice test didn't really work; nonetheless, they said I need a gawd damn root canal! WTF?

For the past three days I've felt pain and poking from wisdom teeth on my top right and left sides, along with a sore throat, aching jaw and headaches. It hurts to open my mouth farther that a about half inch; I've been popping ibuprofen and only eating soft foods. Obviously, I am a huge wimp when it comes to oral pain.

In addition to the root canal and wisdom teeth issues, readers who have actually met me likely noticed that my bottom teeth are horribly crowded, and thus, crooked. It wasn't taken care of in childhood, as it should have been, and through high school and college I never wanted braces to interrupt my singing, acting, speech tournaments and pageants. For myself and those who see me often, it's just part of who I am and we don't notice it; I have been in total denial about the reality of the situation. When it does come up, I am frustrated and devastated. How could a beauty queen, actress, singer and public speaker have ignored nasty, crooked teeth for so long?!? While in LA I had more than one tearful phone conversation with my guy, crying, "why the fuck am I wasting our time and money here when I haven't even fixed what I know has to be fixed...?"

Yes, there are actors with less than perfect teeth, but mine are really bad. When I was in high school and college I used to daydream that some Hollywood-somebody would discover me and think I was so great, they'd pay to have them fixed! Ya right... It just doesn't work that way. especially in these hard times. Two years ago my parent's college graduation gift to me was to help get them taken care of and maybe it's time to take them up on their offer...

I figure if I have to be put under to get the stupid wisdom teeth removed, perhaps at the same time they could pull the crowded bottom tooth and begin the process of straightening them. I feel that if I'm back in Ohio for a set period of time to correct my teeth I won't feel like such a loser for not being in LA. Although the financial burden of this dentistry might be comparable to the living expenses of LA, it's something that needs to be done; and while I'm back in Ohio I would hope to find a more consistent job than Universal in order to contribute to the dental cost and start building my savings again.

It sounds like a good plan right? A wise plan, if you will...

Yet that damn little voice creeps into the back of my mind saying, "if you're really dedicated to your dream, you'd find jobs round the clock in LA to stay there... at least you could go to some audition, as opposed to the NONE in Ohio... Not to mention, the dentists in LA are probably better!"

I don't know if my teeth are giving me wisdom or an excuse...

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