I recently had my wisdom teeth out. It was day surgery, more like afternoon surgery. Admitted at 3pm, home by 7pm. The whole experience was quick and efficient.
So of course, I couldn’t understand why it took me so long to get over it.
I wasn’t in a huge amount of pain, and there were no complications, but I could not stop sleeping for about 4 days.
I kept trying to push through, trying to keep going, trying to manage everything myself, and it was a disaster.
It was only after a friend suggested “maybe I should just rest”, that I stopped fighting the sleep.
And suddenly my recovery sped up. That whole time I had been ignoring my body, and trusting that my mind knew how this recovery should work. But the problem was my mind was saying “it was only a little thing, I should be over it by now”.
My body knew better. My body knew I needed rest. My body knew that I needed to work the anaesthetic out of my system, and give in to the healing power of sleep.
It’s not the first time my body has told me something important like that. Every month my body tells this mostly vegetarian girl, that she needs some red meat. When I was pregnant my body told this girl, who doesn’t really like milky drinks, that I needed to drink smoothies.
I think sometimes we are so conditioned to think of our bodies as machines, and we imagine that they can go on forever if we just control them right.
But in fact our bodies are often the way we find out what is missing, whether it is calcium or iron in our diet, or the need for more sleep.
So having my wisdom teeth out was once more a reminder that I need to listen to my body, and work with it, instead of against it.
And sometimes that means taking a nap.