after my oral surgeon described my pain response as “atypical” i was curious to see if i’d feel any pain after the tooth extraction. the oral surgeon gave me some high strength ibuprofen and hydrocodone and though it was very likely i would not be going to work the next day as the tooth didn’t come out easily. “you might be able to go to work for part of the day,” the oral surgeon said, “but have the pain medicine with you and i hope you don’t have to talk too much.”
i decided that rather than proactively taking the meds to prevent the pain that i thought would come, that i’d wait and see. would the pain arrive?
no, it did not. i went to work with a visibly swollen cheek bone from the extraction, one less tooth and no pain. and i did a good amount of talking. not only did i not feel any pain, but i think i feel in some sense better than before the extraction but it’s hard to describe “how” the better feels.
which explains why i’m just staring at the pain meds i’m not taking thinking about the qualia of pain.