Last week I came down with a terrible toothache that went up through my eye socket, to the middle of the top of my head and all the way down my right side of my neck. Excruciating. I have not had a lot of toothache like that in my life. I am however scared of dentists due to when I was younger a dentist taking one of my teeth out (cause I had too many…) and who didn’t use enough anaesthetic… so I try my best to keep out of dentist surgeries. However, this pain was not like anything else I had experienced, so I got through the weekend dosed up on painkillers and scraped through to Monday where I promptly rang the dentist and got an emergency appointment. After visibly shaking with fear in the waiting room I was called through by a Northern Irish Lady, who was actually lovely and so settled my fears quiet quickly, she did an x-ray and poked and prodded and tapped my teeth. “Hmmm,” she said. “There isn’t any infection or dying or dead teeth. After thinking for a minute she said: “Have you been under a lot of stress lately?” “Grief?” I answered, “That would do it! Was it someone close?” So I explained about John and she was very sensitive and asked questions, and she explained that I was probably grinding my teeth and clenching my jaw without realising it. Seeing as there was nothing else obvious wrong she said she would see how I get on and come back in 2 weeks and I should keep an eye on it. I thought I would give her the benefit of the doubt as, you know, she was a dentist and I wasn’t. Fast forward to Monday evening at my Bible College and they are praying for about someone who died suddenly (They had warned me they were going to be praying about it, which was very sweet, kind and thoughtful of them.) And because it was emotional I was about to cry so tried to hold it in, (as how selfish to start crying about John and my own grief when they are praying for someone else!) and sure enough there it was, clenched jaw, teeth grinding. OUCH! And then I thought back to all the times I had held back my tears over the past year, and to be fair, it’s a wonder I have any teeth left!! When I am out in public I ALWAYS hold in my emotion… poor teeth. Because I have been having paracetamol and ibuprofen interchangeably to manage the pain, today I forgot what I had taken 2 hours before then had to wait to make sure I wasn’t having more than I should have been of one of them, which time landed when I was in bereavement counselling, so had to go without any painkillers trying desperately not trying to grid my teeth or clench my jaw.. but I must have done one or the other as I was in agony when I came out and was howling by the time I got home. Just gonna see how it goes really, but I am aware of it now, so hopefully can contain it a little. It may be that I am doing in my sleep, I don’t think that I am, but I do know that I cry in my sleep so there is a possibility. Ugh. I hate grief.