A Return to the Dentist

Last week I wrote about our first visit to a pediatric dentist. I was, as is evidenced in that post, less than impressed. I felt rushed, pressured, and frustrated. Above all, I could not believe that an office specifically keen to cater to special needs would not take simple steps that anyone working with children ought to consider.

With trepidation, therefore, we returned this week in order to fill my son’s cavities.


The difference was night and day. I went back to sit with him and no one said anything about my being there. The assistant explained everything and tried to ensure my son actually heard her. She let him hold a few instruments and explained the process. She answered his questions and did not come across as impatient at all.

When the dentist arrived to begin the numbing procedure, I immediately apologized for how dopey I’d been. You catch more flies with honey, true; but I also felt I may have been a bit short-tempered and told him so. To my surprise, he laughed and apologized in return. He said he’d been tired, due to adjusting to sleeping with a CPAP, and hadn’t realized how grumpy he was that day till later.

Mutually apologetic then, we had several good conversations throughout my son’s procedure.

The dentist was patient, happy, outgoing, receptive, and attentive. He was everything I intended to lecture -er, gently suggest. I was so happy. My laughing gas-influenced son was happy.

Heck, the dentist was happy. He’d hesitantly agreed to try filling one cavity but successfully filled three. We scheduled the more-invasive crown procedure with confidence all around.

And my son, proud of how well everyone said he’d performed, got to pick a popsicle at the store.



Photo Credit:
Image by Michal Jarmoluk from Pixabay
Image by Pexels from Pixabay


©2019 Chelsea Owens

A Very Unmerry Birthday to You

Yesterday was my birthday. As a mother, that meant the day ran about the same as all the others but my kids and husband wanted me to be happy. Act happy. Look excited. Smile more (well, at all). Eagerly anticipate what household object they had gift-wrapped.

In short, I needed to be as excited as the boys all feel when it’s their birthday.


Like most events in life, however, I dread my birthday. I don’t like being the spotlight. I’m not a fun present un-wrapper. I’m not the life of the party. When birthdays or Mother’s Day roll around, I’d rather not be here to celebrate. This desire confuses and hurts my family.

The problem is that the day is still a day. My day of birth was a Saturday this year; but, when it’s a weekday; I still have carpool, cleaning, sports classes, dinner, dishes, bedtime, and attempts to bond as a couple.

The problem is that my entire life is to anticipate the whims of the house and its occupants and cater to them to avoid nuclear meltdown. Everyone else’s needs come first and I feel shallow thinking about myself.

The problem is, like with most events, I need to ask for what I want in order to receive it -and I feel bad for having wants in the first place. I’ve crumpled up and trashed anything resembling innermost desires; and feel like an indecent, filthy street beggar pawing through something molding when asked about them.


Why? That doesn’t seem healthy. Perhaps it’s not.

Acknowledging the problem or even testing out the whole “asking for what I want” thing doesn’t erase the guilt. Again, though, why not? And, more specifically, how can we erase the guilt? Lobotomy?

Frankly, I’ve spent the last few years in an intentional haze of semi-tiredness (very like a lobotomy) in order to avoid some of these bothersome feelings. I’ve numbed to avoid sadness and empty despair and hopelessness. I’ve pretended contentment and ignored myself in order to function.


Birthdays don’t have to be so heavy and serious, of course. I actually only cried because I wanted to a little yesterday. Then, my sister planned a surprise mani/pedi appointment and my mother took me to lunch afterwards. My husband, for his part, took the children and the housework for the day.

In all, even my Eeyore side had to agree that it was a good birthday.

Now, if I could just get over how guilty I feel that everyone did all that for me…



Sunday, March 17: “The Magic Clothes Washing Machine,” my scientific observations of what the clothes washer produces.

Monday, March 18: Wrote a poem for The Bloggers Bash competition titled, “Five More Minutes.”

Tuesday, March 19: Shared a quote by Christie Mellor.

Wednesday, March 20: Whispered my super secret tip about bread preservation.

Thursday, March 21: “In Case of Emergency, Interrupt.” Never ignore The Look.

Friday, March 22: Advised against Super Momming in “Pinterest Mom or Sane Parent?

Saturday, March 23: Shared Unfiltered Mama‘s tweet about difficult kids.

Sunday, March 24: Today! Yay!


Photo Credit:
Jorge Ibanez
Rune Enstad