Thursday, January 16, 2014

D{entist} Day

I do not have a picture from the dentist's office to share because I was too busy holding Owen's hands
as tears fell onto the blue plastic chair. Read on for the whole story.

Owen talked all morning about going to the dentist.

"I'm going to let the nice lady brush my teeth," he said. "I'm going to open my mouth really big," he said. "I'm going to get a toy," he said. We had him convinced that his first trip to the bright room full of kid-sized dentist booths would be just as good as a day at Chuck E. Cheese, only cleaner!

The morning of the boys' appointment, my middle child grew even more excited when I told him he would get to skip day care. The three of us, just my boys and me, would spend the entire day together. We were playing hooky, sure, but I don't think a teeth cleaning and an afternoon of watching me work at the office was the best possible way to spend it.

After dropping off baby sister {I try to limit my outings to no more than two at a time. Don't judge me.}, we hit the highway and found the waiting room full of texting mamas, impatient children, and teenagers trying to look cool next to piles of Little Golden Books and preschool artwork. Owen made a beeline for the toy area and started making friends. I began filling out the necessary paperwork for one's first dental checkup and was interrupted every few seconds by the discovery of something cool. If this was what it was like to go to the dentist, every six months was not going to be good enough. Then, just as Owen had cast his fishing rod into a basket full of dinosaurs, the door to the exam room opened and a bouncy blonde called the names of the Bauer Boys. Nathan started her way, but Owen stopped in his tracks and the color drained from his face.

He whispered a tiny, "No. No want to, Mommy," as he dropped his toys and clambered into my lap.

We made the quick decision to let Nathan go first and then I could accompany my little barnacle once the older one was done. It wasn't long before Nathan was X-rayed, flossed, and polished, and I carried my 40-pound baby to the hygienist. He didn't really put up a fight when she asked him to lay down, but simply put his head back, opened his mouth, and let a river of silent tears flow.

Eh. I'll take it. You should see the escape attempts this one makes when he knows his pediatrician is going to check his ears or make him stand on the scale. Heaven forbid.

Once he realized it was going to be okay, he told everyone who would listen all about his big plans for a Jake and the Neverland Pirates birthday party. He sniffled through his explanations of a Jake cake and a Jake pinata and a Jake toy. The "nice lady" wiped his tears and his teeth, and the trauma of it all {which, believe me when I say this, was minimal for Owen} was over. The dentist gave him a high-five, a Batman sticker, and a quick look with that little mirror that I couldn't imagine maneuvering properly in a toddler's mouth.

There was not a cavity discovered in either Bauer boy's head and I ended up having to shuffle them both out of the exam room as they told their life stories to the collection of staff. {No idea where they get that.}

This story, that I wrote in particular detail for some reason, is all to say that I'm pretty proud of those boys of mine. Owen did a phenomenal job for a two-year-old going into the unknown and I think the experience was a good precedent for the next time {just ignore that statement, okay, jinx fairy?}. And Nathan, who has had a few visits to the chair reserved for more than cleaning, is always a little leery. The night before, he whispered in his dad's ear that the X-ray machines make him nervous and he's afraid of getting another filling, but that kid just marched in there like he's been doing it all his life. He sure flashed those pearly whites {or lack thereof} when he was given the all-clear.

I hope your Thursday has remained both cavity-free and dental tantrum-free thus far.
We plan to stay that way ourselves... at least for the next six months. :)

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