I have a new gal in my life. Fun facts: She’s a senior Exercise Science major at UNC and plays on the club lacrosse team. She lives with a couple roommates in a Carrboro house and has her own car. We have the same taste in music. (If you're a romantic playlist voyeur, check out my Project Playlist profile.) We talk about anything and everything, especially our shared interest in food politics. Our distance is bridged by exciting text messages during Global Health class and Friday afternoon dinners at Chapel Hill Mexican restaurants. I have a willing companion if Childish Gambino ever decides to come to North Carolina and a dance partner when "My Chick Bad" comes on at Vespa. (As much as I like Lady Gaga and Katy Perry, I can’t give anyone a proper lap dance to their music.) Each Monday when I swipe dental damns from the Know Your Status table; I know they aren’t going to be used as bookmarks.
Unfortunately, this unfurling relationship is marred by one thing: a terrible toothache. (White girl problems? I think not.) Pain radiates through the left side of my mouth at all times. I wince when I smile at cute children. My painkiller of choice, chocolate, is double-edged. I must use real drugs, like Ibuprofen (eeek!) and Advil (yikes!) Eating regular meals is also difficult. I’ve been feeling lightheaded and weak, which is derailing my exercise routine. I just completed two hell weeks, and am gearing up for a possible third. The gulf between what I need to do to get A’s and what I can do is growing wider each day.
A Facebook status about bringing soup and meds to your baby seems like the perfect way to herald the "In a Relationship" life. (This new life requires a revamped Facebook strategy, starting with a new profile picture.) Cuteness is totally Facebook worthy. It is sure to generate a torrent of comments and likes, almost as much as the status about your awesome summer internship or DukeEngage acceptance. But posting cute statuses just isn't my style. I want my Facebook output to inform, educate and entertain, not make people gag. The 43 word synopsis: After scoping out my mouth (my student health appointment isn’t until next Friday) my gal decided Orajel was not a good idea. She hooked me up with Ibuprofen and fast-acting Advil Liqui-Gels. Both of us avoid painkillers, but this is an exception.
Caring for short term, minor health issues is like riding a bicycle with training wheels. When the training wheels come off my new gal could be an incompetent asshole. But all I can expect right now, in this amorphous situation-cum-proto-relationship is what I have received. Namely, an inspection and some pills. And as much as I think I can easily take care of myself, the times in high school when when I screamed and writhed on the carpet from cramps until my mom came home indicate otherwise. Now is the time to delegate, to say no, to give myself some time for mental rehabilitation so I can finish the semester strong. That my new gal supports me in this endeavor bodes well for the future of our relationship. The first hurdle has been cleared. On to the next one.