Monday, December 19, 2011

Dem bones

Dylan's seventh tooth poking through his bottom gums this week is as welcoming to me as the first crocuses in spring. More teeth mean more varieties of food to sample, more chewing, less choking; less worry.

For Dylan, this rite of growing teeth means pain. He's not sleeping well. He's regressing in nursing habits and I'm letting him cuddle up to my chest all he wants with a "there, there" and a back rub.

I'm teething, too.

Dylan's cute little white slit feels fresh and new. My two final wisdom teeth breaking through feel old and dirty, like boney hands reaching up from out of the grave in some horror movie. They fucking hurt.

We Irish are frugal. Just today Sean canceled our local garbage pickup because he felt he was being ripped off--having to pay $5 a week to have somebody take away our one bag of trash when he can just as easily drive it to the transfer station and save his money--unheard of!

So this year we decided to skip on dental insurance.

After all, Dylan didn't need to go yet, and my anxiety over siting in that chair (and Sean's anxiety over spending any amount of money) made for a once in a blue moon visit to see the dentist. We had just seen them late last year. So why pay for insurance we don't need?

Sure enough my tooth pain started in October. Having my first two wisdom teeth out in December of '09 was the worst experience I've ever suffered through--worse than labor--because I was awake, alert, and panicking as I heard every bone in my jaw being hacked down with a grinder. I saw my blood splatter off of the dentist's face mask. I saw my tooth remnants. I would rather give birth a hundred times than go through that again.

And here I was in October with wisdom teeth pain. I fought through it. We have no insurance. Sean told me to go and he'd pay out of pocket. The Irish in me refused.

So here I am. December 19th. We've already enrolled in dental insurance which starts on 1/1/12. I have two weeks before I can take these demon teeth out. I am in severe pain.

So when my baby cries at night and wants to be held all day, I scoop him fast in my arms. His seventh tooth is cute and small and young. I place my pointer finger on his gums and feel his pain.

Sometimes in our years we regress to the steps we first took as babies and think on how far we've come, but rarely do we get to feel the exact same joys of learning to walk, of holding a spoon, of growing new teeth.

I'm fascinated.

And so is the wisdom in which my wisdom teeth--and Dylan's tiny crocus tooth--have taught me.