Oh, and by the way....

It's really weird to be missing a tooth. Even a tooth you don't think much about.

When popcorn goes to get lost in a tooth, you tend to notice if it's a tooth you've had avulsed. It ought to be there, and it's not.

You never get away from it, do you?

Edited to add:

I know this is really ungrateful, and I should be thankful for what I have, but:

On the 26th, I've got the first PET scan since surgery. What will I do if that PET shows something nasty? I *know* it's unlikely. I *know* that, statistically, my chances of having a recurrance are nil until 15 years post-first-diagnosis, but I still worry. My surgeon, who was one of the guys who differentiated PLGA from things like ACA and HGA, was surprised at how well I was doing. I have a hard time getting past that.

His pessimism scares me. The reaction of my prosthodonsist, Dr. Elf, scares me: he's always so amazed at how well I'm doing.

More than that, I am not whole. I am not whole in a very big way. I will never *be* whole, in that my Brother In Beer will still look at me when I try to talk with my prosthetic out and shake his head and say, "Sorry".

At some point, this thing in my head will stop being a party trick.

I would like to be understood without a plastic bit.

With the plastic bit, I have to choose what I say. Now, and for ever.

Maybe that's the lesson I have to learn.