Tuesday, January 1, 2008

Gimme Snot, Any Day

A few days ago, Boychild reached a milestone: his first loose tooth.

I felt a surge of excitement on his behalf because Boychild was worried (as he is wont to do). Would it hurt? What would happen? So we had a chat about dental progression and the Tooth Fairy and speculated on how much dough she would leave beneath his pillow when the time came. We also read
Robert Munsch's "Andrew's Loose Tooth." So now he's more excited about it.

Part of me felt a little sad, too, because this - aside from the fact he's growing fast and is probably the tallest kid in his class - is just one more sign my little guy is not so little any more. Sigh....

Notwithstanding the inherent joy and pain associated with this developmental milestone, there's also a tiny problem. I have a bit of tooth "thing."

It never occurred to me it would be a problem when it came to something like Boychild's all-natural, perfectly normal loose tooth, but when he proudly wiggled that little wee incisor my stomach lurched.

Give me snot, puke, poop, frogs, toads, snakes, lizards, goopy swamp muck, gobs of hair in the bathtub drain - any of that is fine. (Okay, well, I get a bit tired of cat poop smears and hairball barf, but it doesn't make me feel ill.) Threaten to damage a tooth or even talk to me about extensive (or mild) dental work and I quickly cover my ears and sing "Lalalalalalalalalala" as loudly as possible. [Insert full body shudder here.]

I swear, if I am ever held captive by anybody and threatened with torture in order that I reveal some sort of vital national secret (yeah, that's likely), all they'd have to do is threaten to throw something at my teeth and I would crumble like dry old parmesan cheese.

I believe this tooth phobia stems from an incident in Grade 6 when I got into a rock-throwing fight with the girl across the street and her friend. It's not as dramatic as it may sound. We were bickering, really, and it was actually just little pebbles and we were kinda sorta just tossing them halfheartedly at each other, but then her friend let fire with one that nailed me right in the mouth and chipped my right front tooth.

In the grand scheme of dental disasters this was minor, requiring only some filing. Nevertheless, I was distraught and my parents were ticked. They had spent quite a lot of cash on various dental appliances to make my gigantic teeth fit into my not-so-huge face. Probably if it had been some sort of non-stupid "injury" instead of a neighbourhood pebble-chucking match it might not have been as big a deal.

Anyway, since then I have been very protective of my mouth. I worry at hockey games that a wayward puck is going to smack me in the mouth - and that's when I'm sitting way up in the stands. I fret when stainless steel utensils fly out of unwieldy toddler hands. When groom-boy talks about root canals and crumbling fillings from years gone by, I feel nauseous.

For Boychild's sake I shall endeavour to put on a brave face and endure the wiggling demonstrations and the imminent loss. I shall gamely beckon Ye Olde Toothe Faerie to visit us. It will be grand. I'll just try not to dwell on it too much. One almost down, a whole bunch more to go....

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