I detach. I need to detach from my thoughts. Specifically today when I’m going to the dentist to get my second tooth extracted. I already went through it but there is still some fear attached to it. Some fear of pain, some fear of death. I already wrote down my Premortem Via Negativa scenario. This technique is really helpful to keep balance and focus when shit hits the fan. Last time I had my tooth extracted, it broke at the root, and on the same day I had to go to a surgeon to get it removed. I felt no pain whatsoever but I did notice some frustration boiling deep inside. Frustration often shows you what you have to wrok on. I was angry at the first dentist, that he broke the tooth, that he fucked up. I caught myself just in time. Just in time before the spiral of negative thinking could suck me in. How did I do it? Well I said to myslef, while looking at the sky “Thanks. Thank you for this.” This kind of self talk, rewires the brain. It’s a shock to the mind. “Thanks? What the fuck? Why would you wanna thank the doctor for fucking up his job?” That’s the brain. It only thinks about itself. I wasn’t thanking the doctor. I gave a “Thanks” to the universe, because as a human I can only see a part of the whole plan. There will be some good that comes out of this experience, a lesson. If not, the acceptance of the fact, that things that are outside of my personal control are, well… outside my control. This is true. You don’t have control of the external world. You can only control your reactions to the emotions that arise.
There was a lesson in this experience, besides the acceptance. I met a really cool dental surgeon, big heart, smiling, lovely guy. He was awesome and removed the rest of my tooth in like 10 seconds. Now I’m going to him again, so in case anything goes wrong, he can take out the whole thing during one session.
In order to keep the negative self talk, the panic feeling, the fear in my chest, I have to detach. This is another technique (or a technology). Whenever I find myself in a stressful situation, I instantly detach from this body. In my head I say to myself “This body is just a meat pulp. Meat, bones, blood.” I know that I am not my body (meditation teaches you this). My body is only a vehicle. Pain is temporary and just like everything in the universe it will change, fade out.
A warrior (by warrior I mean a human being that is ready to grow, growth can happen only through pain) needs to win theses battles in his head, before he can fight them on the battlefield. Clear mind, clear outcome, emotional intelligence. Even if the universe throws shit at you, you are prepared, both mentally, and physically.
By writing out the negative scenarios, you have a place in your head where you keep in mind that the final outcome is not up to you. You cannot be angry, frustrated or disappointed. You know that bad shit could happen. If it did happen – good, the strategy worked. You keep your cool and push forward without loosing balance and energy to refocus.
This fear of the dentist has been with me for over 20 years. 20 fucking years. Two decades. I did go to the dentist in the past but only if I had to, and that two I used to avoid at all cost. It seems so stupid now, I was doing more damage to myself by running away from the fear. At that time this fear of a dentist seemed unbeatable and eternal.
It all started when I was about 9 or 10 years old. I got a tooth ache at night, and in the morning (just to mention theses were the 90’s in Poland so there was little to none pain management) my parents took me for an extraction. The lady dentist (I think she was an intern) tried to remove my tooth, but was struggling for 30/40 minutes. Nightmare, a bloody fucking nightmare for a little boy that was defenseless. A mouth rape. This one visit impacted my brain in such a way, that the word “dentist” alone made me sweat. This traumatic experience has left my image of the dentist twisted for years to come.
I did need braces, my mom always wanted me to have a prefect smile. She took me to many orthodontist back in the day, but all of them spat out a diagnosis that I need to remove my number 4 teeth. I always panicked like crazy. I was actually a 16 year old boy screaming and crying like a fucking pussy just so mom could leave me alone. My screams worked and I remained with a fucked up smile since the age of thirty.
As I started to grow and develop my persona, I realized that I had the wrong perspective. This perspective did not give me perspective, it took away opportunities to become my best self. I could have hooked up with so many girls, so many chances wasted because of an irrational fear. I always thought that I’m good the way I am, and I was. I was happy until I realized that by not fully smiling, I could never reach my full human potential. I now treat my future smile as a secret weapon. Braces will take about 3 years to straighten my teeth, but I don’t care, I already started it, the obstacle is now the path.
Second extraction is close. I detach, from this body and from my ego. I will just go there, take the syringe up my gums like a boss, and let the surgeon do what needs to be done. I already took a shit three times today. This is how strong the fear is/was. But I also learned a new trick. Instead of being nervous I am now excited. I want to be in that dentist office. I want to get my teeth extracted. If you think about it, the excitement has the same effect as being nervous or stressed. Both always make me shit my pants, both make my mind work like a gerbil on a treadmill. I stopped paying attention to my thoughts. They are there I simply stopped my judgment. 10 minutes of stress and I will be a free man.
I’m a writing this two hours after my removal. For the whole day, I could not get my monkey mind to settle down. I kept shitting diarrhea. What calmed me down by accident was a Spotify play-list for Om meditation. An hour before the extraction, I played the play list while in the lotus position and meditated for 30 minutes. This was the motherfucking key. This was a miracle. My mind was clear. I had no thoughts. No judgments, the storm of the mind has settled down.
I played “Om meditation” while walking to the dentist. Satori. I had a satori moment for 20 minutes. I was peaceful, I felt like this was it. I felt like this is what waiting for death feels like. Total serenity. I was walking slowly, breathing in every moment. Deeply into my belly. The smells of the city were so intense. All of my senses have been enhanced. I could smell the water mixed with earth in the grass, I could smell paint from a newspaper stand nearby. I didn’t even force myself to meditate. I just was walking and meditating. I did not care what people would think of me. I was staring straight forward, I don’t think I was even blinking. I felt like I had died and separated from the body.
The extraction took about 10 minutes. I was the only one in the dentist office so I went in first. I actually played this out in my head as one of the scenarios, that I’m the first one to go. I sat down, talked to the guy, he gave me a local anesthetic. It didn’t hurt at all, just a little pinch of the needle.
I took the tooth with me. This is my medallion, my lucky charm, a notification curved out of a human bone, a reminder of conquering my fear, my biggest fear in life. I now need to clean the tooth from the meat that is still hanging off of it. It’s weird when you are scraping your own tooth with a knife, trying to get your own flesh removed. Barbaric, but calming. You can see your body as an external piece of meat. I feel like my human warrior has gained about 10 levels of experience. This is not the end of the game, it is only the beginning.