Friday, December 30, 2011

My Shiny Teeth and Me

That silly little song keeps running through my head, and I know why. It’s time for another Seyfried tooth adventure.

Don't know that I have the right to write any missive about molars and incisors. My five kids (I'm ducking so you don't hit me) have never needed braces. Never darkened an orthodontist's door. Not a huge surprise--Steve and I were braceless as well, back in the day. The money we saved on retainers alone...well, where is it? Ah, it's in the magic world of make-believe where the money we saved when they stopped wearing diapers dwells!

My toothsome memories include the totally unfair distribution of cavities. The first three kids never had a single one for years and years--Sheridan still hasn't gotten one. The two little ones, Julie in particular, possessed first baby, then permanent, teeth which were perpetually riddled with holes. Their diet was exemplary--very little sugar. No soda. They brushed faithfully. Sheridan, in contrast, went through a long stretch (literally) of chewing gum 24/7--the sugary kind. He also favored sweetened cereal, and never met a bowl of ice cream he didn't LOVE. One day, during our post-exam consult with our dentist, Dr. Mayer showed us the X-rays, first of Sher, then of Jules. Cavity score: big bro: 0, little sis: 8!!!! "Sheridan," he commented, "Do you know what the word 'irony' means?"

Evan and Rose (Rose especially) tended to lose their teeth—lose their lost teeth, that is. On the school bus, at recess, in a plate of spaghetti and meatballs at Rizzo’s restaurant. Dentina the Tooth Fairy always came through anyway, even when they’d swallowed the evidence. Julie lost two teeth within one minute, while eating a crusty piece of bread. I think she was afraid she’d just keep spitting them out until she was all gums.

My Five Favorite Grins
On Wednesday, PJ and his four wisdom teeth parted company.  He had had a toothache for awhile, and the dentist had warned us that this day was coming, so we were prepped with ibuprophen and strawberry smoothies. I recall my own, emergency wisdom teeth removal (at PJ's exact age, 20). I was acting in a play in Birmingham, Alabama, and had to pick an oral surgeon from the phone book. I remember being in a decent amount of pain for days after the procedure. PJ's recovery has been rather more rapid, glad to say. He was even up to a somewhat chewy dinner last night. Pieg had another tooth pulled in early childhood, actually a third front tooth. He'd taken a tumble and his mouth hit a table, just as the two main teeth were coming in; the root split, creating an extra. We're hoping this is his final extraction, as he actually has a rather nice smile and it would be a shame to keep plucking his pearly whites.

The number of toothbrushes in the upstairs bathroom cup has shrunk markedly. But my memories of those five little grins linger on, and always will.

No comments:

Post a Comment