Crunchy food, where art thou?

So, I have TMJ.  Big surprise.  I’ve had it for years.  I won’t go into big detail because you’re on the web, you can look it up.  But I have a severe case of it and it seems, it may be the cause of the headaches which have plagued me since I was about 11.  That’s a big deal.  As in, wish I had known it then.  Am seeing a super-duper specialist named Clifton Simmons who is a delight and the point is, I love crunchy food.  No, the point is, I am fixable.  He’s going to put the ball back in the socket and stop as much if not all of the constant referred pain.  Which has become significant.  To put it mildly.  I now have this thing in my mouth.  And I have to wear it all the time.  Even when I’m eating.  Imagine your jaw and all the muscles attached to your skull that you use when you swallow, talk, sleep, eat, breathe, have been out of alignment and, all of sudden, have been put back in place.  Guess what?  They’re not so happy.  I get to wear this monstrosity, I mean mouthpiece, for about nine months.  I have been asked if at that point, I will then have a baby mouthpiece.  Everyone’s a comedian. I’ve got your nine months right here.  As I adjust to this thing in my mouth, I am compelled to eat food of the non-crunchy type.  Or not eat.  Also a valid option.  I have a vivid memory of my sister Judy at the breakfast table.  “Jane, do you find the CRUNCHIEST cereal there is?” I believe “just to annoy me” was implied.  I had my usual, Cap’n Crunch mixed with Cocoa Puffs (I was coo-coo for them).  I put potato chips in peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.  Fritos in tuna fish.  The only thing I don’t like to be crunchy is my coffee.  And I’ve actually HAD crunchy coffee.  I do not advise it.  As a food addict, all I can think of is crunching.  Therefore I am sucking.  I grab a saltine, I suck it.  If I had a pretzel, I would suck the salt off that.  I am a pathetic creature of habit I know.  I can eat cottage cheese, tuna fish, eggs and protein shakes and be perfectly healthy as I adjust to this change.  But you see, I don’t wanna.  I feel like my youngest child Jenna did when she lost her favorite blanket.  I am just beside myself.  I wander through the house looking for something.  Just something to distract myself.  Something to crunch.  Perhaps I should try my abs.

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