Friday, October 1, 2010

No Cavities and Leprechauns

“Am I going to get a shot in my mouth?” my son Tommy asked for the millionth time that morning.

“Tommy, it depends if you have a cavity or not,” I said as I drove along to the dentist office where he and his sister had an appointment that morning. Early in the morning, I might add. I am not a morning person so being asked the same question over and over was wearing on my nerves. Wasn’t he tired? Didn’t he just want to, I don’t know, BE?

“I don’t want a cavity!” Tommy said, slapping a hand over his mouth.

“So long as you brush you teeth good, you have nothing to worry about,” I assured him.

I parked in front of the dentist office and took a deep breath. Dentists, it should be known, scare the crap out of me. It’s probably because I have a gag reflex so when they’re messing around my mouth, they have to constantly stop so I can, well, gag. Then they’ll sigh and stare at me like I’m doing it on purpose and I’m NOT. Really. I can’t help it. I just need to be knocked out through the whole exam, even simple ones, but most dentist offices say they won’t do that.

My kids, thankfully, don’t seem to have my bad gag reflex.

“I don’t know if I like this,” Tommy said, slowly emerging from the car.

“I wouldn’t like it,” I wanted to say but I have to pretend like the dentist and I are best buds, that they aren’t scary at all, that their office doesn’t smell.

“It’ll go great,” I said and thought that Tommy would call me out on having a fake enthused voice. But he didn’t, he was too nervous.

And Natalie, well, Natalie kept saying, “He’s going to look in my mouth?” as we entered the building.

Natalie hasn’t always done so great with the dentist. For one, she usually cries. Two, she bit the dentist before. On purpose.

The plus about having an early appointment is that we were called back pretty quickly. Both kids had to lie back on the oversized chairs and Natalie did not want to do this at first.

“No thanks,” Natalie said when the dental hygienist asked her to lay back.

“Natalie,” I said, trying to force her down. “You have to lie back so they can look at your teeth. Won’t that be fun?”

“No thanks,” Natalie said and tried to walk away.

“Is Natalie being good?” Tommy asked. “Is she going to cry?”

“I hope not,” I said and managed to get Natalie to lie down. Thankfully she was distracted by the movie playing overhead.

I was tired as we sat there and slightly freaked out that I was in the dentist office. I tried not to pass out when I saw all the dentist equipment lying around. My gag reflex nearly flared when I saw it all. Oh man. The dentist needed to hurry and show up, otherwise I was going to have a panic attack and would probably start racing around the room begging for a paper bag to blow into.

The dental hygienist did the initial cleaning and started making conversation. She asked if we lived on the military base, I said yes, she said she used to live there until she got divorced. She asked what my husband did, I said he was in Korea for a year and then she went, “Oh. My ex-husband went to Iraq for a year and got another woman pregnant.”


It was like she was talking about the weather. “It’s sunny outside, lalala.”

“Oh,” was all I could muster. And then I started to think, holy crap, what if TOM got someone pregnant in Korea?

Not that he’d do such a thing.

“I never knew he could do such a thing,” the hygienist continued.

Oh my God. I was in a dentist office, which is one of the worst places in the world to be in my eyes, second to Hell, obviously, and now I was starting to panic that my husband was boinking another woman.

“I—” I started. I didn’t even know what I was going to say. But then the dentist sat down and asked how things were going.

“Great,” I said lightly, trying to pretend that I was on the beach. And oh my God, I just saw the spit sucker go into Tommy’s mouth. I hate the spit sucker thing. It makes me gag.

“Any concerns?” the dentist wondered jovially.

“I’m concerned that Natalie keeps calling little people leprechauns. I keep telling her that they aren’t, that they are regular people like us but I don’t think she gets it...and...oh, you meant with her teeth?” I immediately felt stupid. But, see, I was tired, I didn’t like being near a dentist, and I was petrified that Tom was sharing his bed with another woman.

“I did mean her teeth,” the dentist said, but he laughed at my comment.

“Right. No concerns with those.”

Natalie didn’t cry or bite the dentist, I’m proud to report.

Neither kid had any cavities.

“Yes! No shots!” Tommy said when he found out.

When I spoke to Tom later that night I blurted, “You aren’t going to get another woman pregnant because this hygienist said her husband did and I’m just not cool with it, okay?”

“Um. Hello to you too?” Tom answered.

“I’m sorry, it’s been a long day, dentists, accidental pregnancies, an irritating fly that I can’t seem to kill....”

Tom chuckled. “I’d never do anything to jeopardize our relationship. I’d miss all your random comments.”

“Natalie thinks little people are leprechauns. Don’t worry, I’m teaching her that it’s not the case but when we watch that Little People, Big World show she points to Matt Roloff and goes, “Leprechaun!” I blabbered.

“Excuse me?”

“You said you liked random comments. I just gave you one so you’d remember what we have,” I said sweetly.



  1. I'm very fond of random comments myself. At least your kids, when on the way to the dentist, weren't asking the ever famous "are we there yet" over and over.

    Oh, and why would this woman want you to know what her ex did when your husband is stationed away? She's not very bright is she. ;)

  2. Pretty much all my thoughts are random =)
    Yay for no cavities!
    I think it's really funny that Natalie calls little people Leprechauns, but you're right, it's wrong haha
    That hygenist lady sounds a little bitter and WHY IN THE WORLD would she think it a good idea to let you know her ex got another woman pregnant! Like that is something you need to even enter your thoughts. people are so insensitive

  3. Haha! Glad there are no cavities or bites to report. I'm not sure I understand why this dentist wanna-be felt it was necessary to tell you that her husband cheated on her in Iraq. Tom will be fine, just tell him to wear his sponge bob shirt all the time. ;)

  4. I can't stop laughing at this post! I would have totally smacked that woman by the way!

  5. Good morning and thanks for the wonderful laugh!! I hate the dentist and if the hygentist started a conversation like this with me I would dye and I don't even have a spouse overseas.

  6. omgawd. like you don't have enough to worry about. it's like a little taste of what hell would be like.

  7. haha! That was great! I'm sure your husband is way better than random hygienist wierdo's husband!Just sayin'!

  8. yay for no cavities! When we took Alyssa a few months ago she had FOUR cavities. Just call me Mom of the year.

  9. What a strange comment from the dental hygenist. It does sound like she is still bitter (which of course, who could blame her?), but she doesn't necessarily need to take it out on you.

  10. Oh that was sweet of your husband to say that!!! and what the devil was that hygenist thinking!? she must be nuts. I work for a dentist, and don't worry - lots of people have a really bad gag reflex. Don't feel like you are the only one! YAY for no cavities! haha

  11. Awkward! How unprofessional of her, lol. Yay for random comments :)

  12. I just loved your post!!! You should have a section in the paper to write funny light hearted pieces...:-)

    Come visit my blog sometime... Your more then welcome. ( )

    I'm the Mom of a 30 year old... so you bring back memories....
    ~ Susan

  13. Have you figured out how to pop up random pictures to Tom when talking, like he does to you?

  14. I can't believe the hygentist would say all of that in front of your kids...yikes! Now that my kids are 10 and 7, I get to bring a book and read in the lobby! Yay

  15. Ahahaha!!! I love that Natalie remembered her manners and said "No thanks" when asked to lay down. She's too funny. sounds like the hygienist needed to get her frustrations out in the open...nice.

  16. How STRANGE of her to say that and with kids there. Of course I am sure she is having a rough time!

    Your husband was very sweet to reassure you even point out his fondess of your comments!!

    Sounds like your kids were well behaved and cavity free!! Yeah!

  17. Ok, A. that hygienist needs a filter. Who talks about cheating spouses in front of kids? And B. you crack me up.

  18. My first thought was :there you are sitting in the dentist office of all places and the damn hygienist is reading your freakin mind OUT LOUD.

    Before and after that? Yeah, I couldn't stop laughing at your pain.

  19. That is too funny! I can't believe the hygienist would be so tacky! Glad the kids had no cavities. Yay!

  20. My boyfriend frequently calls me a dork. I think these terms are meant to be terms of endearment. :)

  21. This was hilarious. Paul thinks I have my own vocabulary that needs deciphering. Not to mention I have a weird habit of starting conversations in the middle, totally not my fault people can't read my mind.

    The hygienist? I wouldn't have been able to keep from asking her, "Bitter much?". (Hugs)Indigo

  22. Wow. WTH was the hygenist thinking? Your children were right there? And hello? Just because her husband is cheating scum, doesn't mean all of them are!

  23. I don't BELIEVE that woman did that! How awful! I'm so glad the kids didn't start asking questions. . . congrats on a *relatively* easy dentist trip and NOOOO CAVITIES!

  24. That reminds me of my first visit to a dentist, back about 71 years ago. I had a cavity that really hurt, and when I sat down in the dentist chair, he began feeling around in my mouth and looking out the window. And, back then I was a little smart-mouth (oops, I haven't changed) and asked him why he was staring out the window instead of paying attention to what he was doing. He replied that he didn't need to look because he could tell by feeling, Ha. I enjoy reading your blog tremendously.

  25. YAY to no cavities and random comments!

  26. You don't have the most tactful hygienist in the world, do you?

  27. Oh, I HATE having to pretend to my kids that the dentist is my best good buddy and that it's no big deal to have a cavity filled! Yay! for no cavities! and I know it CAN'T possibly be PC for Natalie to be calling little people leprechauns but I'll be damned if that's not funny.

  28. You missed a great opportunity. I would have stuck my finger down my throat, gagged, and tossed my cookies all over the nice little dental hygienist for saying such a stupid thing to begin with!

  29. WOW I cannot believe that hygienist said that to you! Maybe it happened recently and she's still bitter from it. Regardless, she still shouldn't have said that to you! What Tom said to you is TOO SWEET :) and YAY for no cavities! I am also petrified of the dentist thanks to a bad experience my senior year of HS- went to get my teeth cleaned and the dentist ended up cutting my upper gum because he was going too fast.. had 3 stitches.. it was horrible!

  30. Oh, my hell, your life is insane.

  31. My hubs is the king of random comments. He got tired of my asking, "Huh?" all the time so now he'll preface things with "New subject."
    It doesn't always help.

    BTW I hate the dentist, too. Actually, my dentist is nice, but I hate going. They always talk about things like crowns and root canals even though my teeth are fine! Gag.

  32. LOL you really make me smile when I come to read your posts daily. :o) Your random comments crack me up! I'm glad Tom is behaving himself over in Korea and that the kids have great teeth and no cavities - I too am terrified of dentists and have to have gas and shots just to put me out to get my teeth cleaned - so just know you are not alone! HA! Big hugs! :o)

  33. funny. I have a bad gag reflex too. luckily my son seems to have inherited that - so I never worried about him choking - unluckily its led to much more puking than I think the average child/mother experiences. and more puke usually ends up on me than him.

  34. I hate the dentist too. Im conviced they are all evil. And probably mean little leprechauns too.

  35. This post had me giggling! Thanks for that! :)

  36. I'm just glad that Tommy didn't ask you if Dad was going to bring home a new brother or sister for him and Natalie! I love Natalie calling little people leprechauns! It's better than midgets now isn't it?

  37. Don't ya just love random statements. I like butterflies.

  38. good job on no cavaties! I hope your considering a new dentist.

  39. The hygienist that cleaned my teeth the other day and found EIGHT cavities (I'll pause so you can gasp when you think about all the hours I'll be in that chair with the smelly drill) and she was asking me if I got married later in life. If she hadn't had all those tools of torture at her disposal, I might have kicked her in the groin.

  40. ok, so even knowing that you and tom are great. I STILL want to slap that bitch. I'm sorry but you don't go around saying stuff like that as if it applies to everyone in even remotely similar circumstances. ugh.

  41. You are just too cute! I love your posts. And I hate the dentist as much as you do!

  42. Wow! What a day you had!!! I really hate when people share their bad stories with you like that. I mean, hello??? Nice of her to give you a nice mental picture and something new to worry about!


    And your kids rock!! Apples didn't fall far from the tree, did they??

  43. This was hilarious to read. Thank you! My favorite part: "Not that he'd do such a thing"
    "I never knew he could do such a thing."

  44. What lovely expressions.
    Well captured.

  45. I always breathe a huge sigh of relief when the dentist gives me the all clear. I am not even a fan of the cleaning and prefer they get it out of the way as soon as humanly possible.

    PS Yay for non-extra-marital pregnancy inducing husbands!

  46. Ugh, gag reflexes are the worst! Sometimes if something gross crosses my mind while I've got a toothbrush in my mouth, I gag. Sorry if that's TMI, haha.

  47. Thank you for the AM chuckle.
    - Seongnam, South Korea

  48. Reading this made me realise how much I dreaded taking my boys to the dentist, not to mention going myself. The one good them about them growing up is that they can all take themselves!

  49. I tagged you in my post today! Happy Monday!

  50. Oh yes. I know exactly how you feel. But couple it with a weak stomach and your blog made me gag.

    I wish I could bite the dentist on purpose.


  51. YOU are too funny! We need to make it to the dentist asap as well! Thanks for the reminder :)

  52. I think this is one of your better bits of writing!

    :) I was so "in the room with you" when you the dental hygentist was talking...

  53. And there's your next book: "How Random Comments Keep the Joy in My Marriage!" Somebody needs to immediately administer an enormous dose of novacaine to that idiotic hygienist. Maybe you could have a leprechaun do it!!!


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