Tears, teeth, and that smell

Yesterday I had a dentist appointment. It was a rough day in all ways. We got some not so fun news this week, Chris was traveling, a not so fun day at work, the list goes on. I will not bore you with the details. I am in the dentist chair getting my teeth cleaned, exhausted and almost falling asleep. I keep smelling something that feels familiar and realize it is my hygienist. I told her I was having a rough day and she was great, just kept quiet and did not talk too much. In turn it allowed me to be quiet.

Behind the big green glasses they give you to block their bright light, I felt tears come to my eyes. I had just spoken to my sister on my drive over to the dentist office. The smell reminded me of something from my past which in turn made me think of my mom, thus the tears. I was having one of those “I miss my mom moments” while my head was lower than my feet in the dentist chair. “Seriously?” I am thinking. “I have tears in my eyes at the dentist?” Most likely the emotions surrounding all the events of the past few days are bringing the water works, but did it have to be at the dentist?

No one noticed. Funny how I truly hate going to the dentist, and yet at this moment of cleansing, when they scrape, floss the crap out of your gums, and prod in your mouth, that it was the hour in my day that I needed to just let go, and hide behind the green glasses under the bright light. It always amazes me how the littlest smell can set off emotions in your body, bring back memories from childhood, and make you miss someone who has been gone for 20 years. I was having a day where I wanted to curl in a ball, scream and yell, throw a tantrum, and have my mom tell me it was all going to be alright.

My sister consoled me, Chris later consoled me, but sometimes all you want is your mom. Life is real and raw and painful sometimes. People let us down. We move on, we grow thicker skin, and somehow we make it through it all. Sometimes though we just want our mom to tell us that we did all we could do, and that we are going to be alright. I am looking forward to a new day full of opportunities to be quiet and listen, dance and run, and snuggle and hold those that are dear close to me.

Oh, and I have clean teeth now.

A Dime, Bazooka, and Lost Bounty

I remember two specific houses that I always wanted to avoid when trick-or-treating as a kid. One was a woman down the street who would take a dime, a cotton ball, a piece of orange tissue paper and make little mini jack-o-lanterns with the dime as the flat base, the cotton on top wrapped tightly with orange tissue and the face drawn on with black marker. Borrrrrring. Yet, she was so before her time. That would be something I would find today on Pinterest. As a kid though, I thought it was such a waste. A dime? Really. I got more from the tooth fairy, and that was not saying much.

The second house was about five streets back where the houses were larger and usually occupied by doctors and dentists. I knew most everyone in my neighborhood due to the afternoon newspaper I delivered to a large percentage of the neighborhood, and the many, many years of Girl Scout cookies I sold. This particular house was owned by a dentist and again, borrrring. They did not hand out apples, but rather Bazooka gum. Which out of all the gums it was more of the sugary kind, but I was not a gum girl. I guess gum, even with a little sugar, was better then getting a dime on Halloween.

I do remember one year when I was the last kid to the dentist’s house, or maybe they were just done for the night. They gave me the rest of their bag of Bazooka. That was like winning the lottery as a kid, especially as a kid who rarely had candy and treats at home. I took it home and of course hid it from my sister and brother. I learned early on that to share meant it would be gone in moments and I would have to wait until next year. In our house when treats were like water in the desert, you found ways to hide your bounty. Funny how “hiding” meant under your pillow. I am sure I had many lumpy nights of sleep. Until many months later when my sister and I found the bag of Bazooka under my bed, hard as a rock. It must have fallen under the bed while I slept and I had forgotten about that gum. There was no way that we could ever chew any of it, the entire bag like tiny bricks. An interesting thing that happens when you do not share. Sometimes your bounty just goes to waste.