When the oral surgeon took my arch bars out, he told me that I’d be able to resume eating the hardest foods “some time around the fourth of July.” Obviously that was an approximate date, but it seemed as good a day as any, so yesterday I acquired a bag of eight Royal Gala apples. Originally, I was planning on saving them for breakfast, but I got hungry around midnight, so I ate one at about 12:05AM and another a few minutes later. I had another one for breakfast, and just finished another one a few minutes ago. So far, I haven’t had serious problems with my jaw, although with the first couple there was some pain on the right side (opposite the fracture). My repaired teeth also seem to have handled it fine.
In other news, I took a ride back to the scene of my accident this morning. I’ll write about my visit as soon as I can, but there’s actually quite a bit to say about it, so the post might not make it up for a day or two.
My accident was ten weeks ago today. With the teeth having been repaired and arch bars off, there are no obvious visual signs of serious injury remaining. I do still have scars from the road rash on my elbows and hands. My facial wounds healed long ago, but I’m finding that the bump on my chin where I had stitches is very prone to getting cut when I shave.
I sometimes get a tingly numbness on the left side of my face, but this seems to have grown more slight over the past few days. Occasionally, I feel a little discomfort (which I would not describe as pain) on the left side of my jaw. I do get a little bit of pain on the right side of my jaw when I open my mouth very wide, but I think it’s just a pulled muscle. Sometimes I also get a soft sound coming from the left side of my jaw when I open or close my mouth. The best word I can think of to describe it is a creaking sound, but I don’t think that captures it perfectly.
It doesn’t feel like it’s been this long, but my accident was five weeks ago this morning. Life is pretty much back to normal, aside from being more lost than usual in my classes and not being able to chew.
I’m very much aware that I’ve been writing a lot more about what I’ve been eating since getting the wires removed. At first, this seemed backwards. I thought that what I ate on the more restrictive liquid diet should have received more attention because it was more abnormal. Having thought about it some more, though, I think there’s a pretty good reason for the way things are. On the liquid diet, I ate pretty much the same thing every day, so there wasn’t a whole lot to say. I’d have several smoothies, a serving of Vega, and a can of soup. Now that I have more options, of course there’s more to write about.
With that said, here’s a summary of today’s meals:
- Breakfast was the usual oatmeal, but today I increased the portion, starting with a cup of dry oats rather than half a cup.
- Lunch was a soy yogurt plus variations on a couple of things I’ve eaten in recent days. One was chinese noodles with miso. I decided to try this as a substitute for ramen after I realized how salty ramen is. The first time I read the label of a package of ramen a few days ago, I was impressed to see that it had less than 200 milligrams of sodium. However, I took another look yesterday, and I realized that I had read the wrong line, confusing the number for potassium with the number for sodium. In fact, a single serving has over 1000 milligrams of sodium, so I decided to do something a little different today. As with the ramen, I added some silken tofu. This time I used firm silken tofu, which has the advantage of more protein. I had no difficulty swallowing it without chewing. The other half of lunch was a can of refried beans with shredded tortilla bits. I realized after the fact that I ate the refried beans much more quickly and comfortably than I did on Thursday.
- Dinner was a bowl of tamarind lentils from last night.
- Dessert was Purely Decadent soy ice cream with Latchkey Lime Pie, from a recipe of Isa Chandra Moskowitz at Post Punk Kitchen. I actually made it last night, but it finished too late for me to try it. I used a graham cracker crust (Arrowhead Mills brand) because I was looking for something crumbly. It was a great pie, although the texture is a bit more gelatinous and less creamy than a typical key lime pie. This was fine with me, but it’s not something I’d serve to an omnivore to prove that vegan food can be normal. Or maybe I just don’t want to share my pie with anybody. I ate two slices and a couple of tiny slivers, altogether adding up to about a sixth of the pie. For what it’s worth, I think the graham cracker crust worked very nicely. It crumbled in my mouth as I had hoped, and the lime filling infused it with a very nice flavor.
- A while after dessert, I remembered that I had four mangoes, which were on sale at Whole Foods last weekend. I decided to try one which seemed ripe. It was good, but perhaps not as ripe as I should have let it get before eating it without chewing. I tried, with varying degrees of success, to crush little pieces of mango between the roof of my mouth and my tongue. It all went down, but I think it would have been better to wait a little longer for the mango to soften. The remaining three mangoes will wait a bit longer.
Incidentally, I think today is the first day in four weeks that I haven’t eaten any smoothies. I actually like smoothies, but enough to be make me want to have as many as I had while wired, so this is something of a milestone.
Today marks a couple of milestones. Roughly half an hour from now will be two weeks from the time of my accident. Early this morning was the halfway point of my time having my jaw wired shut. For the most part, the recovery is going better than I expected. I certainly wouldn’t have thought that after only two weeks, my face wouldn’t have any scars or scabs. There are a couple of spots that are a bit pink, but the most noticeable change is that I still haven’t shaved my chin near where I had stitches. The abrasions on arms, legs, and hands are healing, but a bit slower than my face.
I still have to get to work on writing about the last two weeks. Unfortunately, I’m badly behind in my schoolwork.