a morning at the dentist
I had never gotten a crown before, but I boldly said I wanted to do the two I needed at once because I hate the feeling of the local anesthetic wearing off. It worked: my dentist has the technology to produce the final crown while you wait, so I was out of the office in about two hours with both crowns completely done.
I got up early to run beforehand, wanting those endorphins in my body for the dental work. And I took a walkman-style CD player even though I rarely listen to music. For the drilling part I listened to Sacred Ground by Sweet Honey in the Rock. It really helped, both to take me someplace else and to help with the noise of the drill. I wished I had brought something to help me with the smell--that became the most unpleasant thing.
After I had been home a little while I suddenly had the idea of going bike riding. I figured that would distract me from my tingling jaw and maybe even pump more blood and clear the medication faster. At the end of an hours ride I could talk comfortably again (and I had even thought to put on chapstick). It is a new pattern to me, to exercise to feel better.