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April 22, 2012

kindness. at the dentist.

i'm thankful for the forty minutes of kindness i experienced yesterday at my dentist's office. i had to have a cavity filled, just how i want to spend my saturday afternoon. i was dreading it all day, but i woke up, somehow dragged my tired butt to spinning, which only made me more tired, came home, then went to my appointment. 

i have the most wonderful dentist in the world. no, i really do. as my name was called, i saw my regular hygienist who gave me a big hug. sandy's good like that. i walked into the exam room, took out my iPod, which they encouraged me to use from the beginning, and got in the chair. a different hygienist, laura, asked me about my weekend and told me about hers: she was going to dinner with her husband and ordering a pizza for her two sons to have during the hawks game. 

"we're gonna go to outback. we haven't been there in a while," she said.

my dentist walked in, saw my sox shirt and asked me about baseball. mind you, all this is happening while i'm getting a nice dose of nitrous. 

it means everything, everything, to sit in that chair and be taken care of. to have dr. ericson rub my arm while laura gives me the novocaine. to have laura dry my tears and put vaseline on my lips. to have dr. ericson ask me about my favorite place in the world.

"florence," i said.

"italy. ah. i went there with my husband for our twentieth anniversary. we got lost in tuscany and i said, 'well, if we have to sleep in the car, so be it," she said. 

this. this opened up my heart. 

and she didn't stop talking and neither did laura. they rubbed my hands as i blasted rihanna and kathleen edwards so i wouldn't have to hear the tools. they also gave me protective sunglasses to wear even though i always keep my eyes closed. they always tell me exactly what they're doing, which helps me to relax. then they were done and as i sat there switching from nitrous back to oxygen, bob marley came on. i remembered to breathe. and i was fine. 

even on the days when believing these words feels like a total lie, i know they aren't. i do believe these words. i believed them yesterday in that chair and i believe them right this very moment. 

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