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Its been  two months of procrastinating. The first dentist said it had to go.

The second dentist said it had to go. My friend has a dentist friend, he said, because I was, as the French say, ‘ of a certain age’ that it needed to go. My wife said it had to go, ditto my mother- in- law and my mum. So I made an appointment. To be truthful my wife made the appointment. I cancelled it.

Why would I do that? Simple, because I am scared silly of dentists even though my head tells me it is an unnatural fear. My heart rate cranks up, I sweat, I feel sick. And that’s before I even get there. Benji our poodle felt the same way about the vet. As soon as he saw the building all four legs went rigid.

I have heard it said that until the pain of doing nothing exceeds the pain of doing what needs to be done, then most of us will do nothing.Couple of days ago it got to that point and for the second time my kind wife made the appointment..

The receptionist looked kindly at me, seconds later Matthew the dentist collected me. I now know the mask was not a disguise  in case it went wrong, apparently it was all about hygiene.

I tried making small talk. The assistant chatted away gaily. And Matthew was professional. This was routine.  He would use the biggest needle I had ever seen to anaesthetise the ‘area’, then he’d yank the thing out. ‘Yank’?.  It started well enough. The noise was a tad worrying, in minutes I was told the tooth was broken but half was out. All of us breathed a sigh of relief. As it turned it that sigh was premature. Matthew left the surgery a couple of times. I hoped it was just a loo break. In case it wasn’t, I closed my eyes so I wouldn’t see what he was wheeling in.

It seemed as if it was hours later ( really only 15 minutes) that they both finally uttered ‘ahhhhh’ and there was a clunk as the last bit of tooth clattered into the silver bowl. For some bizarre reason Matthew asked if I want to see ‘it’.

The answer was of course not! I lay there for a moment getting some ‘colour’ back into my cheeks and then made my way to reception to pay the bill.

Then it reallyhurt.