Monday, August 27, 2007

The Tale of the Teeth

I had my six-month dental checkup today, and I was not looking forward to it.

Over the past few weeks, I've noticed some sensitivity on my right central incisor. I couldn't quite place the cause of the pain because it was so infrequent, but it seemed to be coming from the inner side.

More recently, I had been experiencing the pain in my sleep, sharp enough to wake me up at times. But most of the time, I was so groggy and incoherent, I wasn't totally convinced it was my imagination. Indeed, one of the times coincided with a dream where that tooth was becoming loose, as if it was a baby tooth.

As the dental hygenist began her exam with the routine, "Have you been experiencing any problems?" I mentioned the pain. She took a look at it with the mirror and said that it looked like gum line had receded a very small amount. When I said that I experienced the pain usually in my sleep, she thought it might have to do with clenching or grinding of my teeth in my sleep.

During the post cleaning checkup, the dentist looked at the gum, and agreed with what the hygenist said she saw. He wrote me a prescription for a rinse.

It was the first real visible sign that the stresses of my life are extracting a visible physical toll.

I discussed this with my therapist today during our weekly appointment, and she noted that I looked tired and sounded depressed. After I discussed all what was going on in my life, she recounted seven different sources of stress. She suggested I start taking some time out for myself because I was becoming a good candidate for depression.

Last week was a bit rough on me. I was rushing to get the standards paperwork done for today. I did two hours of in-person interviews with So You Think You Can Search on Monday. I had a traveling interview out in the Steel City on Tuesday. I did an hour's worth of phone interviews with PrizonFone on Wednesday, and then I finished my Friday with the phone interview with Gong Show Panelist Investment Bank.

With the exception of PrizonFone, all of the interviews either went badly, or had a spot that was questionable. I didn't receive feedback from the interviews early in the week, and Do-No-Evil hadn't given me an update on my phone interview the week before. I sensed a loss of momentum, as if my quality as an applicant was starting to deteriorate. I was losing hope.

I had a lot of daddy duty last week, too. My wife had several nights where she had to be at the preschool co-op, which meant I had to leave work early and look after the kids. Over the weekend, she took a two-day trip with her longtime best friend to a riverboat casino. Her friend's mom had some comp money that allowed them to have an affordable weekend of free room and cheap booze.

I didn't begrudge her these things because I know that the preschool can be really high maintenance this time of the year, and I don't want to be disagreeable on the verge of a big life change. She'll have plenty of hard times ahead. I don't want to add to them.

I'm trying to keep things light for this week because I really want to prepare for the big two traveling interviews on Tuesday and Friday of next week. The recruiters aren't wanting to give me any breaks, though. I racked up five voice mails today, including one from the obsessive girlfriend saying that her company was still interviewing candidates and wanted to know if I was still interested. So maybe that interview didn't go so badly after all.

One other interesting turn on the job search... I was looking at new postings over the weekend, and I noticed that Large Indigo is advertising that high performance computer programming position again. I wonder if their original candidate fell through. In any event, I sent an e-mail to my internal contact for that role to let her know that I'm still interested.
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