Yesterday, I sat sweating in a chair in the dentist's office. In the waiting room. Because I hate the dentist. Yes, I know. Bad. But I can't help it. I've tried to change. But I've had some negative experiences. However, I know how important the dentist is, and I'm fanatical about dental hygiene. So my kids go regularly. And they don't mind much at all.
They were both getting their teeth cleaned, and I was biding my time, taking deep breaths and reading fashion magazines. "This isn't so bad," I told myself. "Everyone seems nice here. Dentistry has changed a lot since I was a kid."
Then an elderly gentleman sitting across from me asked me the time. I told him. He grimaced. "Sure takes a long time to pull a tooth," he commented. I gave a sympathetic nod. "I'm sure things are going fine," I said. He leaned forward. "Years ago, a dentist was drilling my tooth and it shattered. He tried to fix it, but he did it wrong and it caused an abscess all along the top of my gum line. There was nothing anybody could do. I lost all my upper teeth."
WHAT THE ...?!Who shares a story like that in the dentist office?? I must have looked absolutely horrified, because he added hurriedly, "Not here. They fixed me up with some new ones here. Real nice." And then he smiled.
I smiled back, still in shock. I was still smiling when my kids bounded back out, safe and sound, teeth unshattered. And I was still smiling when I left without making an appointment for myself. Oh, I'll make one. I might just need a little recovery time. Or a full memory wipe.