At least, that’s what the nice dental hygienist told me this week. Sort of. Mostly.
I, the model patient, had not been to see the dentist in 12 years, not counting that one time in college when my teeth were killing me and had them checked out for like, 20 seconds by a dentist wearing no shoes. I suspect he spent his day kicking back in his office sniffing Scary Dental Gas, because he said my teeth hurt because I was stressed out. Come on, who gets stressed out in college while taking 90 bagillion hours to catch up with your husband and have not even 10 cents in your pocket and have to scrounge under the car seats for money for Peanut Butter M&Ms and a Diet Coke and you’re a newlywed and your birth control pills make you a crazy person and your husband leaves his socks on the floor and watches football which your mom taught you was the “F” word and you got a dog at the pound and realized you had no time to take care of him and you had to give him to your father in law and your dog ran away? Really.
So, I decided to live life to its fullest and see my local dentist. Who happens to attend my church. Which seemed cool at the time but then the night before my appointment I got scared thinking about my Dentist Church Friend being grossed out by my teeth so I was madly flossing and contemplating gargling with bleach to destroy the Bad Breath that surely the Nice Dentist In Whose Home I’ve Sat In And Scrapbooked With His Wife would tell everyone about.
I even brought along my toothbrush and toothpaste and brushed my teeth in our office bathroom, where I had to use the Mens Room because the Ladies Room was occupied by our Breastfeeding Receptionist and I had to brave the stench and touch as little as possible and use lots of papertowels and try not to look at the toilet as I brushed. I was quick but efficient. And I used the bathroom spray.
I worried about Bad Breath all the way in the car and I tried to breath with my mouth open, you know, to air it out and I ended up gagging a little because geez, it’s kind of gross breathing with your mouth open. Men, how do you do it?
Once at the Dentist’s Office, I filled out the 90 page Spanish Inquisition asking for details on my birth and did my Granddaddy from 1890 have Dental Disease, I wrote in very small writing that I hadn’t visited the dentist in 12 years. The Nice Lady Behind the Counter asked loudly once more, “12 years? It’s been 12 years since you’ve seen the dentist? Are you sure it’s been 12 years?” publicly shaming me as she made mental tsk-ing sounds while rapidly typing on the computer keyboard, alerting everyone that I am, in fact, the world’s worst dental patient and to break out Scary Drills and Yucky Slimy Stuff to lather on my teeth (that’s a fluoride flashback *gag*).
I sat down and watched CNN because I like to remain current on events.
Actually what happened was I turned my eyeballs onto the TV screen and let them glaze over as I planned my lunch and wondered what it would be like to be on American Idol and if Stacy and Clinton are going to burst into my office this week, humiliating me in my choice of bra and make me get up on national television with my bosoms for all the world to see while a Nordstrom’s lady loudly proclaims that I, in fact, need a 49 GGG or something God-awful and expensive and what would Lance say if I came home today with red hair like Allison and should I paint my fingernails and is it tacky to want to paint them white and would that make my pasty-white skin look like raw chicken flesh and I am regretting those 19 miniature candy bars I ate yesterday before remembering I was going to the dentist the next day and-
And then my name was called and I had to walk towards the Dental Hygenist Lady who is looking at me with a bright smile but I know inwardly she is saying “12 years? This is going to be disgusting.”
And I sat down in the weird lounge chair/dentist bed thingy and exchanged witty banter.
Actually, I apologized up front for the banana I ate for breakfast and assured her I had done everything I could to eradicate The Stench.
After Xrays, Dentist Friend Guy came in and peeked in my mouth and for a few terrifying moments where I realized this could be it, my reputation as a Fine Upstanding Citizen could all be undone with this man with his fingers in my mouth and possible Bad Breath Germs floating towards his nostrils and I tried to say sorry but it came out as “swrhtoyyy froooor ddaaaa bbbbfdddddaf bbrrrtththhh” to which he just laughed and said it was par for the course.
It turns out, after these 12 years, I only have one tiny minuscule barely there cavity and otherwise excellent teeth. There was very little pickage of the plaque and tartar and the hygienist told me she couldn’t believe what great shape my mouth is in.
And I don’t even care that she nicked my gums with her pick thingy because not only did she compliment the color of my teeth (I’m thinking yellow is the new white) and how large my mouth is and but she remembered my children from a couple of months ago and said what nice manners they had.
She’s my new BFF.