Can’t Handle the Tooth

In honor of the incredible toothache pain I’m in right this very minute, I’m going to share a quote by one of my favorite authors of all time (and then a book of his, too). Or maybe two books of his. Or three. Or…

“If only this toothache would go away, I could write another chapter on the problem of pain.” -C.S. Lewis

That guy, up there, wrote exceedingly well about the God. And life. And pain. And love.

And friendship.

I like what he wrote about friendship so very much.

The first book of C.S. Lewis’ that I read was “The Four Loves”. Although still hovering over Christianity as though it were a possibility, I was still too full of Bertrand Russell and Friedrich Nietzsche to land.  And as I read Lewis’ take on charity, eros, philia, and storge, I realized there were enough “thinkers” in this Christianity gig to make it a pretty sure thing.

And then, I got to the part about friendship and I exhaled. Because, exactly.

“Friendship is unnecessary, like philosophy, like art…. It has no survival value; rather it is one of those things which give value to survival.”

But, then in The Abolition of Man, Lewis brought me down to my knees. I thought I saw through all that religiosity and hypocrisy.

“You cannot go on ‘seeing through’ things for ever. The whole point of seeing through something is to see something through it.”

Oh boy! He had my number. And as I speed read every book I could get my hands on (because, BOOKS!), I realized that there was no more denying God.

So I didn’t.

Ultimately, C.S. Lewis, turned my eyes outward and upward.

And they are ever upward.

Even as I sit here feeling like I can’t handle the tooth (pain). 

Yes indeedy.

If you are hovering over Christianity, grab a copy of C.S. Lewis’ The Screwtape Letters. Or, The Great Divorce. Or, if you are more fantasy fiction leaning, The Chronicles of Narnia series. (And no, it’s not just for youth. I daresay you get far more out of it as an adult!)

And then, if you missed any of my previous posts on the Best Books Ever, click the button below. I am writing this series as part of the Write 31 Days Challenge.

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Oh, They’re Listening Alright

We had to go to the dentist today. Saturday.  I’m not a fan of Saturday dentist appointments.  Saturdays really should be spent doing something, anything, other than having someone pick at your teeth.  No offense to my friends who are in the dental industry or married to dentists.

And, also, every time I enter a dentist’s office, I feel the need to break into the song from Little Shop of Horrors, “I Want To Be a Dentist”.

In other news, my children strongly dislike their dentist appointments.  This is odd to me, as they both have been endowed with practically perfect teeth.  Captain Ahab and The Nana passed down some amazing “toother genes” as we like to call them. (We are nothing if not scholarly in our verbiage.)  It’s not like they’ve had to endure hours of work done, or anesthesia, or pain of any sort. Unless you count the pain from their twice yearly flossing.  Because, y’all, we don’t floss.  Sorry, it’s true.  I don’t want to lead you astray, thinking our dental routine is any great shakes.

Anyhoo, what my sweetkids do like about the dentist office that we go to, is the waiting room.  It has video game consoles and a castle climbing structure.  And it’s a good thing, because when I arrived, they notified me that they were running about 20 – 25 minutes behind.  Sweetman had just texted me, moments earlier, to ask us to swing by Starbuck’s on the way home and pick him up a coffee.  I texted back, and then… well, you can see his horrid sense of humor in the picture, below.

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I may have completely ignored his choice of emoticon because if I don’t, the razzing just goes on and on and on.

Each time come to the dentist, my sweetchildren also seem to have an incredible ability to make fast friends with whatever other kidlets are there.  Today was no exception. What was exceptional, was the name of the little girl that Sweetgirl befriended.  It was, “Neveah”, pronounced Nuh-vay-uh.  I told the adult how beautiful it sounded and asked where it came from. “It’s Heaven. Spelled backwards.”

Before I could process that or spell check it in my head, my own child’s name was called for our appointment.  We merrily headed back and Sweetgirl proceeded to tell the Hygienist how excited she was to pick out a prize, take a ride in the chair, and get a new toothbrush.  My little talk-a-saurus hopped up on the chair, still chatting away, telling our Hygienist how she liked to talk and talked all the time and didn’t like to stop talking.  The Hygienist mouthed to me, over her head, “I’m sorry!”.  Oh, my child…

However, as soon as that chair started it’s “ride” backwards, terror gripped her.  I could see the scream starting in her throat and leapt up from my wooden child’s chair 3 feet away to soothe her.  The poor Hygienist didn’t have a clue what was coming down the pike; and I don’t want to overstate here, but Sweetgirl can be a bit, um… dramatic.  Shocking, I know.

We narrowly avoided a crisis by showing her the sparkly sunglasses that would help protect her eyes while the big light shined on her mouth. The Hygienist then started in with how she needed to shine the light because Sweetgirl’s mouth was like a little cave, and the light helped her see well enough to do her job.  Sweetgirl proceeded to try to talk through the entire teeth counting and scouring parts of the visit, unless she was screeching over each new tool brought to her mouth, or sound made by “Mr. Thirsty”.  It was a delightful 5 minutes that felt more like 500.

We stopped for a moment to get the toothpastes out. Sweetgirl was offered a choice of 3 different flavors, one of which was cotton candy.  Sweetgirl exclaimed, “Cotton candy!  I never had that taste before.”  The Hygienist lauded her for this and thought it prudent to explain how cotton candy is made out of sugar and is very bad for your teeth.  I didn’t think then was the time to correct Sweetgirl about the fact that she loves cotton candy and asks for it anytime we see it at a fair, grocer, or store.  Right?

By this point, I do believe that the Hygienist was starting to get the picture, and realized that she better get on with it, and quick; otherwise, she’d need to break out the chocolate before our visit was over.  And not for us. I’m no dental expert here, but I’d guess they don’t take too kindly to the dental staff shoving chocolate into their mouths, in the midst of a dental appointment.

You’ll be happy to note that the rest of the visit went along uneventfully.

Sweetgirl and I stopped by the grocery store in the same plaza for some essentials.  We were, after all, out of my Salted Caramel Gelato, and I needed butterscotch chips. Also, we were down to our last roll of toilet paper.

Almost 2 hours later, we pulled out of the drive-thru at Starbuck’s.  Sweetgirl piped up from the backseat, “Mama, why is cotton candy bad for you?”.

Huh.

I thought that conversation had gone right over her head, but no! She’d been listening, alright.  And mulling it over in her head. Because, now, I had to re-explain what cotton candy is made out of and how sugary things can rot your teeth if you eat too much and how if you don’t brush your teeth often enough…

She interrupted me to say, “But, Mama, you give me sugary stuff all the time!”  (Which, hello!  I do not!)

But, all I could think was, “Thank You Lord that she didn’t say that in the dentist’s office.”

Yes indeedy.